Recuperating on a military hospital bed where she is being treated, Jeannine Uwimana, a mother of four is recovering from a delicate surgery that removed a large protruding swelling on her forehead. Local media had branded it ‘giant pimple’.
The Rwanda Military Hospital on Thursday conducted the successful surgery of the scary swelling that had ravaged Jeannine Uwimana’s face.
She was admitted three days ago following a story by KT Press sister news site kigalitoday.com, which writes in Kinyarwanda, Rwanda’s national local language.
“I did not know that soldiers could feel concerned with my case and treat me. May God bless them,” said Uwimana, who is yet to be discharged.
“I had been very depressed to the extent I gave up seeking treatment because I had searched everywhere for years to no avail.”
The medical team that performed the surgery said several kinds of body tissue normally found in other parts of the body had relocated to Uwimana’s face.
Uwimana’s case is referred to as a normal frontal scalp cyst. A cyst is a sac that can be filled with air, fluid or tissue. It can appear anywhere on the body, according to the medical team and available research.
Cysts start small but can grow with time when no medication is provided. It is not cancerous.
“When we opened the swelling, there were fluids inside and human tissue that is found in other parts of the body such as teeth fragments, bones, and others,” said lead Doctor Cpt Shumbusho Jean Paul.
“Due to lack of knowledge about the disease, people usually blame it on witchcraft. But there is no relationship whatsoever. This is a disease that exists and is treatable.”
Cpt Shumbusho said the catalyst for the pile-up of tissue from other organs is caused by an abnormal development of cells which seek to develop other organs on other parts of the body.
He added that Uwimana had lost hope. Apparently, even at the Rwanda Military Hospital, she doubted whether the diagnosis the doctors were telling her was actually real. Uwimana went through a rigorous counseling session to convince her all was headed for the better.
Uwimana had been rejected by her community, including her mother and siblings. They tormented her as having been bewitched. Even her husband left her, saying he could not live with an “animal”.
“I once came across to a traditional healer who promised to treat me if I pay him Rwf 50,000, but I, later on, found out he was a conman,” Uwimana told KT Press from her bed.
The surgery at the Rwanda Military Hospital lasted for 5 hours. The lead doctor had four assistants and a team of 5 anesthetists. They had at their disposal the latest state-of-the-art equipment, as RMH is one of the best equipped in the country.
“The success at the end of the surgery is what matters to us even when it took us more time, energy and resources,” said Shumbusho.
“I am very happy the operation was successful. She regained her normal face, can talk and eat. She is also healthy. However, the post-surgery management is very crucial which will continue until she heals completely.”