Photo By: Adam Forgash
Originally uploaded by interplast
Loja, Ecuador-Emily Ulm, Interplast volunteer nurse
It has been over a week since we left Ecuador and returned home. While it is great to be back home (as I am a newlywed!), I definitely miss the dynamics of the team. It is difficult to make such close friendships over such a short period of time, and then have to say good-bye, knowing that I will possibly never see these wonderful people again. And I do miss making a difference in the lives of people who may not have otherwise had a chance to be helped without Interplast.
One very encouraging result of this trip was that a third-year plastic surgery resident, Dr. Jimmy Mejia, was taught, first-hand, by Dr. Ian Wilson to operate on cleft lips and palates. Dr. Mejia, who is originally from Loja, is completing his training in Guayaquil. Once he’s through with his studies, Dr. Mejia plans to return to Loja to help continue what Interplast has begun. With excellent teaching, and equally excellent translating by medical student Sophie Post and by Interplast staff member Liliana Vazquez, Dr. Mejia was able to successfully operate on a palate and a lip by the end of our trip. Dr. Wilson was very proud.
I must also add that Dr. Mejia was an excellent host of his native city. One evening he took a few of us to the local fair where we played foosball, ate fried coconut and shopped for souvenirs. Thank you Dr. Mejia.