Six-month-old baby’s leg is amputated: ‘Amputating was the best choice in his case’

2017-10-06 16:25
PHOTO: Supplied

PHOTO: Supplied

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A six-month-old baby boy from Polokwane’s leg was amputated earlier this week.

Elken Mynhardt’s leg was amputated above the ankle at Limpopo Medi-Clinic in Polokwane on Tuesday. He was born without a fibula (calf bone) in his right leg, leaving him with just one ankle-bone.

“Amputating was the best choice in his case,” his mother Sumé Potgieter explained.

She says otherwise Elken would’ve needed an operation to straighten his legs every year and doctors would’ve tried to build a new ankle for him, which had only a 10 percent chance of success.

“He’d need so many operations. Initially we didn’t want to accept it but the doctor insisted we should amputate,” she says.

Sumé says her son is smiling and active again after the amputation. “We were discharged today (Thursday) and are very excited to be going home.”

Elken was rolling in his bed and giggling “so he seems just fine”.

His first appointment for a prosthesis is in two weeks’ time. “We want it done as soon as possible,” Sumé said. “Then he can learn to crawl and walk with his prosthesis. Kids adapt very quickly and we’re confident it will be the case with him.”

Elken’s parents hope he’ll be able to lead a normal life and run rings around them one day.

“It was an enormous shock everyone struggled to process, but now his dad, Charl, and I are looking to the future,” Sumé said.


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