Dubai: 52-year-old expat nearly lost his legs after falling off mountain; saved in series of surgeries

The hiker, who was rescued in a 12-hour operation, is now undergoing multiple sessions of hyperbaric oxygen therapy as part of recovery


Angel Tesorero

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Published: Sat 20 May 2023, 7:37 PM

Last updated: Sat 20 May 2023, 9:01 PM

A 52-year-old British expat in Dubai, who recently fell 10 metres off a mountain, almost lost both of his legs due to serious injuries. Thanks to his doctors who raced against the clock to save him, he will soon be able to stand up on his own again.

Waiwah Yip, who sustained multiple injuries, underwent medical reconstruction totalling seven operations at Batterjee Medical City – Saudi German Hospital Dubai.

A doctor from the hospital recounted to Khaleej Times how they were able to conduct the successful medical operation: “After a two-hour long rescue operation and a visit to another hospital, the patient was transferred to our facility 12 hours after the accident.

“The patient (Yip) arrived at night in the emergency department. He had unstable pilon fractures on both legs. The right lower extremity was open, and the foot was white and cold, indicative of a vascular injury.

“The race against the clock started and due to the prompt diagnosis and preparation done by the emergency department team, the patient was quickly brought to the operating room,” the doctor added.

A multidisciplinary team of doctors was formed, led by Dr Otilia Iorga-Füstos, consultant orthopaedic surgeon, and Dr Raashid Intesar Shahbazi, consultant vascular surgeon. Yip’s right foot was revascularised and the fractures were stabilised with external fixators.

Then, the definitive treatment of the complex fractures was performed over the following two weeks by Dr Omar Sabri, head of the orthopaedic department.

In all, the reconstruction required seven operations due to the extensive vascular and soft tissue damage.

Currently, Dr Sherief Yehia is performing multiple sessions of hyperbaric oxygen therapy with Yip to increase tissue healing.

The expat is making a rapid recovery. He thanked the collaboration and dedication of the multidisciplinary team of doctors for saving his legs as he anticipates that he will soon stand up again on his two legs.


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