Originally uploaded by interplast
Cao Lanh, Vietnam-Sheila Wolfson, Interplast volunteer trip support.
Minh felt like a lucky man as the owner of a full service gas station, until his tragic accident. A customer deliberately threw a cigarette into a puddle of gasoline which set him on fire. After the accident he remained in the hospital for seven days, but did not receive adequate treatment. He was then taken to a hospital in Ho Chi Minh City and remained there for 24 days. Since he had no physical therapy or splinting, he had terrible scarring and major contractures on his hands, which made them useless. Our surgeon hoped that surgery might give him a bit of movement in one of his fingers, but there was not much else we could do for him. The touching part of this story was that his wife was very affectionate and loving despite his severe deformity. She showered him with kisses when she entered the recovery room after his surgery. We have found the Vietnamese to be grateful and kind, but it has not been very common to see public displays of affection between husbands and wives, so their loving relationship of 17 years stood out.