Mohammed's Heart Surgery

Central Iraq

"Today he got his heart fixed."

Posted on Tue, 06/28/2011 - 23:23 by Jeff Sheehan

Early morning in Jerusalem is brisk, a cool breeze adds grist to the mill. As my coworker Yousef and I walked up the road to pick up the sherut bound for Tel Aviv it was invigorating to be out in the morning. We were on our way to visit Mohammed, scheduled for a morning surgery to repair his Tetralogy of Fallot. This eleven-year old boy and his father from Northern Iraq have been with us at Shevet Achim for almost a month. Today he got his heart fixed. 
We arrived to the ward in time to be with father and son and support them during the difficult period of pre-surgery anxiety, which is a core principle of our community

Mohommed to Surgery in the Morning

Posted on Mon, 06/27/2011 - 21:53 by Donna_West

And suddenly the wait was over

Record Time Pick-Up!

Posted on Thu, 06/23/2011 - 22:14 by Donna_West

Picking up Mohammed and his father today was not like a walk in the park, but it was a little like a drive- thru. If only I could drive and take pictures at the same time, I could show you this first miracle of the day. As I was looking (and praying) for a parking place at Wolfson Hospital, I decided to circle through the area where we pick up and let out patients. To my surprise, they were outside waiting and ready to leave, ports removed and bags waiting. A quick phone call to the nurses' station to inform them I had Mohammed gave them an opportunity to send his medicine home with me.  In record time (13 minutes to be exact) I arrived at Wolfson and was leaving again with Mohammed, his father AND his medicine.

Mohammed Moves Forward

Posted on Wed, 06/22/2011 - 00:00 by Kristina Kayser

Mohammed, the shy, yet slightly mischievous boy who sneaks up on me from behind and picks me flowers from the garden, has become a "little brother" to many of us here at Shevet. Since arriving three weeks ago, he and his father have become an integral part of our community. As time passed without word from the hospital, they never once voiced a complaint. Their patient waiting was finally rewarded today as Mohammed underwent the next step towards surgery: a cardiac catheterization to be performed under sedation. Yousef, Shevet member extraordinaire (above center), traveled to Wolfson early this morning to support father and son.

Doctors planned to lace a small venous catheter into his heart to measure the efficiency of blood flow, and also inject special dye into the catheter to test his heart's pumping ability. It is a painless, semi-invasive procedure; however, Mohammed, who has never experienced anything like this in his life, was truly frightened.  When I arrived several hours later, it was just in time to see him before the cath began.

This time, there was no attempt to hide his tears. They flowed freely down his cheeks. Loving encouragment surrounded him from Shevet family members, and doctors stopped by with handshakes and "pep talks."

Thankfully, Mohammed was in and out of the cath lab within a couple of hours! One cardiologist informed me that the test went without incident and based on the results, Mohammod's Tetralogy of Fallot repair should not be complex. I found Mohammed lying peacefully in his bed, dozing in and out of anesthesia. His father, ever calm and attentive, hovered at his bedside. And since Mohammed's mother wasn't here to make sure her son was eating properly, his father filled that role for her. Few words were spoken, but his strong presence reflected love for his son. Ryan from Shevet pointed out recently how much this resembles the love of our heavenly Father. Even in times of deep silence, His very presence brings unexplained comfort to our souls. When it was time to say goodbye, Mohammed was wide awake, chewing bubble gum with that shy smile I have come to love so much. It was evident that his heart was once again at rest in the assurance of a father's strong love.

"We have come to know and have believed the love which God has for us. God is love,
and the one who abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him." 1 John 4:16

A Day of Waiting in the Hospital

Posted on Tue, 06/21/2011 - 20:09 by Donna_West

So, how do you say, "A room, soon" in Arabic?
A sleepy Muhammed arrived at Wolfson Medical Center this morning early enough to beat the rush of many children arriving from Gaza. And yet, the word of the day was "Please wait in the fish room and we will call you".
Muhammed braved the blood-work with some comfort from his father.  The wait extended beyond lunch time due to all the rooms still being full until the day

Mission Accomplished

Posted on Tue, 05/31/2011 - 23:56 by ryan
Mohammed's adventure in Israel commenced last evening after a long journey from Iraq with his father. Unlike many of our families here at Shevet, Mohammed comes from an Arab Iraqi family rather than a Kurdish family. Not long ago, doctors diagnosed him with the cardiac anomaly Tetralogy of Fallot. The mission he has chosen to accept in bravely stepping across borders is to undergo a quadruple repair of his heart by Israeli physicians. 
This mission began today at Wolfson Hospital in Tel Aviv. He may be outwardly shy, but I believe Mohammed's courage runs deep. I observed him throughout a long day of hospital pre-admission testing, and admired his patient character. He is his father's son. Typically parents and children can become exasperated throughout the "obstacle course" of procedures and wait time, but this father-son duo was remarkably different. I saw that Mohammed has an excellent example to live by in his father; he is a true gentleman, offering me a seat at every opportunity, graciously accepting delays, and reflecting a good-natured spirit for his son. 
Several times, I tried to capture Mohammed's charming smile, but it repeatedly slipped away in front of the camera. The only moment to bring tears to his eyes was when the nurse gave him an injection for a PPD (tuberculosis exposure) test. I hugged him as he quickly wiped away his tears, the little boy in him surfacing while trying so hard to be grown up. As we exited the hospital, a crew of Shevet members and new friends gathered around Mohammed and his father. 
Behind the lens, I saw genuine warmth and encouragement given to our newcomers as they venture forward in a quest for a new heart. I pray that Mohammed would continue to "be strong and of good courage," coming to know the promise that God is with him wherever he goes (Joshua 1:9). Today's visit to Wolfson was a success, and coming home to a lovely Jerusalem evening was even better. Mission accomplished.

Mohammed from central Iraq

Posted on Thu, 05/26/2011 - 13:53 by iamadmin

11-year-old Mohammed is from a mixed area in central Iraq. It