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Boy fights for manhood after botched circumcision

By Dalton Nyabundi | Dec 25th 2016 | 3 min read
10 year old Benjamin Baraka is attended to by a doctor at st Monica hospital in Kisumu county on December 24 2016. he developed complications after undergoing circumcision at Vihiga District hospital. PIC BY COLLINS ODUOR

A 10-year-old boy risks losing his genitals after a medical circumcision went awry.

In a classic case of professional negligence, doctors now say Benjamin Baraka from Mbale may require grafting, following botched circumcision at Vihiga County Hospital.

When The Standard on Sunday visited the Standard Four pupil and his mother at Kisumu’s St Monica Hospital where he had been referred to yesterday, he was in great pain as doctors tried to treat the wound.

A tube connected to his crotch leads to a tube sitting between his legs. The urinary catheter is perhaps the only indication that all is not well with the cheerful boy with a singsong voice.

Dr Hillary Awuor, St Monica Hospital’s administrator, says the only way to save the genital now is through grafting, but the wound must first be treated. He said the penis had lost sensation.

“The grafting cannot be done on a raw wound. The wound has to show some signs of healing and resolution,” said Awour.

Grafting in this case is a surgical procedure where skin will be removed from one part of Baraka’s body and used to replace the damaged penile skin.

Dr Awuor said although there are complications associated with this kind of surgery. The surgeon was hopeful that it would work.

The boy’s mother, Eva Nasaya, said she walked into Vihiga County Hospital with her son on November 2 and paid Sh1, 000 for a procedure most of his agemates in Luhya land were undergoing bravely.

The nurse who performed the surgery wrongly sliced the foreskin and as soon as the procedure was complete, the wound started swelling. But, the nurse dismissed this as normal and prescribed a few drugs that would take care of it.


It occurred to Ms Nasaya that her only child may have been wrongly sliced when the other boys were healing, yet her son’s was becoming septic with pus oozing from the sinuses around the penis.

“He cried throughout the process and the nurse said it was normal. The next day his penis started swelling and two days later, it developed blisters but the nurse kept telling me it was normal. He just asked me to give him the drugs he had prescribed,” narrated Ms Nasaya.

About a month later, the wound was getting worse. The pain the boy felt on his crotch had suddenly died down. The wound was rotting. So she went back to the same hospital to seek further care and answers.

She was referred to a surgeon of the hospital who agreed that the procedure was wrongly done. The wound had developed dead debris and smelly, abnormal growth around it.

Baraka was immediately admitted to the surgical ward, awaiting a corrective surgery. But since the wound was septic, the surgeon first cleaned it and removed the dead tissue, a process called debridement.

She was directed to bathe him with warm, salty water for four days for the wound to heal before the plastic surgery could be done.

On December 5 when the surgery was due, however, doctors in public hospitals downed tools and they were abandoned.


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