Posted on Dec 12, 2012

A teen from the African nation of Zambia is preparing to go home after a life-changing foot surgery in Virginia

Mambwe, 18, came to the United States with size 17, 6E feet because he was suffering from a condition similar to Elephantiasis. After two surgeries, which included eight incisions and 15 plates and screws, Mambwe's feet are now a size 14. The boy's feet weren't just extremely large—they were also deformed and he was in a great deal of pain.

"They were all expecting me to have my legs amputated," says Mambwe, "My mom she will be very proud of me."

Mambwe got the opportunity through a group called Orphan Medical Network International (OMNI) and he received $100,000 worth of care at LewisGale Medical Center. Karen ReMine, President of OMNI, is so happy that Mambwe will have a new outlook on life. "The only care they could give him (in Zambia) was to amputate both legs, so he's gonna have a future and a life,” she told reporters. “He's a bright boy. He has a lot ahead of him, so this is a chance for him."

Mambwe came to America in March and in addition to going home with his new feet, he will also return 9 inches taller. He is thinking about becoming a doctor one day. Unfortunately, he will also return to the poverty he grew up in. His doctors and supporters hope that the media attention and Mambwe's new ability to walk will get him attention from Zambia's government and also give him a better chance at getting into college.

At Fixing Feet Institute, we are certainly glad to hear that Mr. Mambwe's foot surgery went so well. Our Arizona foot surgery doctors perform similar medical interventions regularly at our clinic in Surprise, AZ. Contact our office by calling 623-584-5556 or by sending e-mail to [email protected] if you need to reach out to our team of podiatrists.

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Dr. Peyman A. Elison
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Founder and Managing Partner of Fixing Feet Institute