Coya, Peru - February, 2010

Team Type: Plastic Surgery and Dentistry

Campaign Summary: Seventy-four patients were examined and 38 surgeries were completed.


Sponsors:
Oregon Health Sciences University, Portland, Oregon
Porex Technologies Corporation, Fairburn, Georgia

Team Members:
Dr. Doug Anderson, Anesthesiologist/Dentist
Don Bennett, Assistant
Linda Johannson, Scrub Nurse
Cindy Laurance, Assistant
Jackie Linstram, Scrub Technician
Dr. Chloe Maycock, Anesthesiologist
Dr. Kate McCarn, Otolaryngologist
Sandy McDonald, Registered Nurse, PACU
Amanda Phillips, Assistant
Dr. Berklee Robins, Pediatric Anesthesiologist
Kendall Snow, Certified Nurse Anesthetist
Dr. Christian Stallworth, Facial Plastic Surgeon
Gay Tanner, Registered Nurse
Dr. Gerry Tanner, Anesthesiologist
Dr. Tom Wang, Facial Plastic Surgeon
Dr. Stephen Weber, Facial Plastic Surgeon
Betty Windes, Registered Nurse, PACU

Narrative:
This trip marks the 6th time for our surgical team to return to the Kausay Wasi Clinic in the Sacred Valley of Peru. For this trip, we had 17 volunteers, 6 of us going down for the first time.

We arrived right after the entire region had been hit with torrential rains causing terrible flooding and massive mudslides. This left many of our patients, and even some of our Peruvian clinic staff, homeless. The devastation was readily apparent as we traveled to the Clinic. Due to the washout of a key bridge, we had to take a much longer route to reach the Clinic. Fortunately, we did not encounter much rain during our week and we were very busy for the entire time.

We treated patients with cleft lip and palate deformities, microtia (absent ear), scars and other facial plastic and reconstructive problems. We were able to run two operating rooms concurrently, taking care of some very challenging cases. Our wonderful team was fully up to the task and handled all of the inevitable little bumps in stride.

Of course, it wasn't all work and no fun. We were able to sample the local cuisine, including a cuy (guinea pig) dinner in downtown Pisac. Some of us also rode from the 14,270 ft high Abra Malaga pass down to Ollantaytambo on fully suspended mountain bikes. The air was thin at that altitude, but the scenery was truly spectacular.

On reflecting back, the success of our trip was due in no small part to the positive, can-do attitude of our team members. We came together as a cohesive unit and everyone pitched in and did what needed to be done. With a mindset like that, you can't help but have a great time while helping those in need. We can't wait to go back in 2011!


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