In 2017, The Organization for the Christian Force in Bayonnais (OFCB), a local Haitian-based nonprofit, has operated a school in the region for nearly 27 years. Every year, they travel to Haiti providing students living in Bayonnais with the opportunity for an education and a meal each school day. During the trip, they met Sidson, a 15 year old seventh grader with a severe hip problem. Sidson had to use crutches full time because of debilitating pain that had been with him most of his life. The team, along with friend Dr. Pressly Gilbert reached out to Dr. Fehring to find a way to help this special patient. Sidson’s injury was so severe that the organization paid to fly Sidson to North Carolina to receive proper treatment from Dr. Fehring, Dr. Virginia Casey of OrthoCarolina Pediatrics and their team. That’s where the young boy’s road to recovery began.
Sidson only spoke French when he landed in Charlotte so language would prove to be another challenge he faced. He also wasn’t able to move his hip and things were getting progressively worse. His team of doctors was concerned about tuberculosis at first. Once they were able to rule that out, he was diagnosed with mono articular rheumatoid arthritis affecting only one joint, not the whole hip as originally thought. Dr. Fehring and team wanted to avoid replacing his whole hip at such a young age with post-op limited medical care in Haiti so they opted to fuse his hip. Sidson was in a full cast and brace for twelve weeks. Post-surgery, Brenda McKay and her family of Charlotte cared for Sidson in their home as he began his long journey of recovery.
Sidson’s Next Steps
Hip surgery isn’t easy, but after weeks of recovery in the States Sidson returned to his home in Haiti. He is now walking with ease and pain free, speaking more English than he ever has and his quality of life is forever changed.
“It can take a village to treat
a patient sometimes, but to make a difference in the life of just one is so
important,” - Dr. Fehring.