AFSHAN AZIZ, ARAB NEWS
A twelve-year-old Somali boy who nearly went blind in one eye regained his sights thanks to efforts by a Jeddah-based volunteer medical team.
Ahmed Abdullah suffered from serious cornea damage in his left eye from the age of four. His vision had decreased gradually and, without treatment, his sight loss could have gradually become permanent.
The medical team came across Ahmed during his visit to the medical camp, which was organized in Somalia by the team in coordination with the Islamic Relief Organization of Saudi Arabia, where they noticed his eye problem. Since the camp lacks the appropriate equipment, it was very difficult to implement this highly expensive surgery in Somalia. Therefore, the team exerted all possible efforts to bring the child to Saudi Arabia for surgery.
“Saving a child’s eyesight goes beyond just providing treatment; it is changing someone’s life by giving them vision, and this is the true achievement”, said Dr. Mohammed Haddad, a member of the team.
He added that the four hours of successful surgery occurred in one of the private hospital in Jeddah.
Ahmed’s father said that since being ‘nearly blind’ in the eye, the boy’s vision had improved fourfold in the first week.
‘When he started it was hard for him to identify our faces and things with his weak eye. Although he is still a long way off where he should be, he can read with his eyes now,” he said, adding that “I am grateful to the medical team for saving my son’s eyesight, free of charge”.
The team, consisting of six doctors, organized several mobile camps with the support of local charity organizations in poor countries by offering prevention and treatment for people with health problems and to help those suffering who cannot afford treatment, or are in countries where the services are unavailable.