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Trauma, A Forgotten Priority – Angola Day 8

Burned Child


Over the weekend Ezekiel, in the photo above, was playing indoors and fell into the family cooking fire. As the boy screamed in agony the traditional healer smeared cow dung and herbs over the burns covering his face and chest. By the time Ezekiel arrived at our healthcare center his skin was heavily infected and covered with pus, further deepening his burns. Our first treatment was to give Ezekiel a much needed anesthetic, and then to gently scrub away the scabs and dirt. An antibiotic and topical ointment brought Ezekiel’s infection under control.

Most of us think about infectious diseases like malaria and dysentery when we contemplate child health in the world’s poorest communities. But injuries like fractures, head trauma, and burns disable great numbers of children as well. To be fully compassionate and caring should we not expand means to protect precious children like Ezekiel? What would you recommend?

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