Over 500 Operatons since 2001
The placet doctors have operated over 600 times on more than 70 patients since 2001. The terror victims come from Afghanistan, Iraq, Chechnya, Kenya, Angola, Tajikistan and Mauritania.
The operations were successful in restoring the functions of mutilated limbs and reducing the consequences of disfiguring burns, defects and scars on the face and body.
In addition to the operations, we support our patients with their psychological trauma. As the patients are only able to communicate in their own language, interpreters are hired to mediate between patients and doctors as well as other supporters and caregivers.
The patients, often children, are accompanied by a family member. We give them everything they need to live: accommodation, food and drink, new clothes (especially in winter), plane tickets and all the medical essentials: Orthopaedic aids, medication, physiotherapy, bandages.
For the protection of the patients, their full names are not mentioned.
Once treatment is complete, patients return to their home countries. Some of the children remain in the SOS Children’s Village or the Peace Village until they are completely recovered. Here they they are cared for, go to school and learn the German language.
Patient A. came to us at the age of seven from Chechnya.
In January 2009, a mine exploded in his garden. The consequences were severe burns to the face, a considerable deformation of the auricle and a contracture in the wrist that impaired function.
He visited us with his mother in December 2009 and stayed for the first time in June 2010. Five face and hand surgeries took place and another stay was planned to further improve his situation.
In 2013 the upper part of the left ear was reconstructed by the first operation. During the next operation, the left thumb was freed from its scarring bondage and the thieves are treated shortly afterwards, the damage to the eye, mouth, neck and left hand was vastly improved.
He flew home satisfied and went straight back to school.
Just before his flight home with his mama, the lip has been recently operated on and swollen.
Patient Ab., 28 years old, is a bricklayer and rapper by profession. He comes from Mauritania, a north-western African state on the Atlantic Ocean. Since independence in 1960, there has been repeated unrest between black Africans and the Arab rulers.
Patient Ab. was at a demonstration when police fired tear gas grenades into the crowd. One grenade hit Patient Ab.’s left hand and exploded. Police officers beat his legs with batons.
In 2012, Patient Ab. underwent four surgeries by placet on his severely injured hand. His teeth were fixed. He subsequently received intensive physiotherapy and occupational therapy.
In July 2012, he broke off contact. He probably went to Paris on his own to apply for asylum there. We heard nothing more from him.
Patient An. is 32 years old, a veterinarian and comes from Beslan in Chechnya.
She was with her daughter for her school enrolment in the school building where the attack and hostage-taking by terrorists took place. She was seriously injured by detonating bombs. Her daughter was spared.
After the rescue, she was flown to Moscow for treatment.
She came to us in March 2005.
First we made a diagnosis and found that the upper arm bullet fracture on the right had healed steadily. There was a greasy defect wound there.
On the neck she had several metallic foreign bodies between the main vessels.
The deltoid muscle on the right was denervated, but without severing the supplying nerve, the axillary nerve, which will recover.
We operate on her twice: we removed the shrapnel from the neck and treated the wound on the upper arm.
In 2016, Twelve year old Patient B. from Uzbekistan arrived at Placet via the Peace Village.
He had burns on the right arm, the right shoulder, the right chest and the right foot with corresponding functional difficulties.
We started treatment in October 2016 and operated on him five times, and he can now move everything again: his shoulder, his arm, his foot. He returned home in April 2017 in a good mood.
In between his operation and his flight home, he received a very special form of physiotherapy: boxing training in the Sauerland studios with Uli Wegener.
Patient D. is eight years old and comes from Tajikistan. He suffered facial burns, particularity to the eyelids, nose and mouth and both hands.
We started treating him in July 2019. In the first operation we treated the right lower eyelid, the mouth and the scars on the face.
Also with Patient D., we were unable to work as we would like: Covid slowed us down.
Patient Dz. was born on 03.07.2002 in Dushanbe, Tajikistan. In 2012 he was severely burned at the neck by a gasoline deflagration, but did not get any necessary treatment at the time, although he lay there in the hospital for 2 months.
In March 2014 he came to placet through Friedensdorf and a few days later received an operation in which the scarred contractures on the neck were treated by resection of the scars and coverage of the resulting defect with dermis replacement and split skin. His neck and head mobility has improved significantly.
In 2007 Patient F., then 5 years old, traveled from a village in northern Afghanistan to placet in Berlin. Six months earlier, a fire at her parents’ home had left her with severe burns of 60% of her body surface, resulting in large, disfiguring and severely functional scars all over her body and open infected wounds on her right arm and right leg. Both knee and hip joints were so bent by the scars that Patientin F. could neither stand nor walk. Likewise, the right arm and right hand were not functional. The face was scarred all over.
After many operations in 2007, intensive care, extensive physiotherapy and countless consultations with all those involved in the healing process, Patient F. was able to walk up to 20 steps alone with the help of special rails.
In April 2008 Patient F. was admitted into a home for children in Berlin. There she recovered, had lessons, physiotherapy and learned to integrate into a social structure.
In July 2008, Patient F. was operated on again at the Westend Clinic to remove the contracture of the right elbow.
In 2009 Patientin F. received physiotherapeutic treatment. An external fixator was applied to her right wrist to slowly expand the contracture there.
In 2013 Patientin F. was operated again after a long hiatus, as the fingers and thumb of the right hand were barely functional. After a successful hand surgery, the fingers are mobilized by regular physiotherapy.
During her stays on the children’s ward in the Westend Clinic, she was always looked after lovingly by the nurses.
She has been playing the violin and taking lessons since 2015. She now lives with a highly committed placet employee.
In 2016 she went to grammar school.
In February 2017 we examined her hands again, the function of both hands was improved by operations in July 2017 and July 2018, as well as the stretch ability of both knees. In the face the scars became less conspicuous through medical needling. Currently, she has undergone 29 operations.
Before our treatment: Patientin F. is very weakened, she is unable to move her right arm and hand.
2015 violin lessons
2018: A beautiful young lady!
In August 2020, she will transfer to another high school that is more in line with her aptitudes and abilities.
In May 2021 Patientin F. became a German citizen!
Patientin H. comes from the Kurdish part of Iraq.
Patientin H. did not want to marry the man arranged for her by her family, so in 2007 her uncle poured gasoline over her, set her on fire and mutilated her. She was also tortured and shot in a fake shooting. After treatments in Iraq, she finally escaped to her brother in Mainz in 2011.
He referred her to us.
In August 2012 we saw a completely disturbed and depressed young woman. She hid her face and hands and is completely dependent on other people due to the mutilation of her hands and cannot do the basic things of self-sufficiency: Dressing, undressing, eating, body care.
Face, ears and hands were severely damaged, hands function less. Arms, upper body and thighs were scarred.
We started treatment on them and operated four times on the face and both hands between October 2012 and February 2013.
Since then the patient has taken out insurance in Germany and would like to continue being cared for near her place of residence, she goes to the BG Clinic in Ludwigshafen for further treatment.
Patient Ho. is nine years old and comes from Syria. In 2012, his home was bombed and went up in flames. In 2016, he fled to Germany with his parents.
He suffered severe burns to the haired part of his head and right hand.
We plan to treat him.
The youth welfare office had to take him away from his family because he was beaten and sexually abused there.
We operated on his hand.
The scalp with hair will be done later.
Patient I. came to the turmoil of war in the former Yugoslavia as an infant and was severely burned in the face. She subsequently underwent several operations.
The now 25-year-old woman still suffers from clear consequences of injuries: The nose is disfigured, nasal breathing is suspended, the movement of the eyelids is disturbed, the red of the lips is barely visible. Her teeth are diseased, she has migraines. Her psyche is badly damaged.
We are treating her.
Patient J., 9 years old, comes from Angola.
He was referred to us via the Peace Village. After being burned as a result of armed conflict, he had severe scars on his left arm and left hand. As a result, his left upper extremity was unusable.
We treated him between January and April 2015 at the Emil von Behring Clinic and operated on him three times.
At the end of March, he found himself in a state of mental emergency characterized by auto aggression, xenophobia and a post-traumatic psycho syndrome. We therefore took him to the Bethanien hospital in Moers, near the Peace Village, where he could be visited by his friends.
This improved his psychological situation. The plastic surgeons continue the treatment and help him further.
The patient at admission
Ten-year-old Patient L. comes from Angola. Friedensdorf International brought her to Germany.
In her infancy, she suffered severe burns to the left side of her head, left hand and parts of her body: she is blind in the left eye, the eyelids on the left are destroyed, the left face is scarred, the mouth is distorted, the scalp is scarred, the hair roots are destroyed and the left hand is deformed into a clumping hand with a corresponding dysfunction.
We operated on her nine times between May 2015 and July 2016:
Upper and lower eyelids as well as the lower lip were reconstructed. The left hand was operated on several times: The thumb was released, the long fingers were released and the finger bones were brought into the correct position.
An adapted rail stabilizes the result.
The left eye cannot be restored. The scorched scalp is so badly scarred that a transplantation is not possible.
In August 2016, she flew back to her home country significantly improved and satisfied.
Shortly before her return flight.
The left hand when admitted: An undifferentiated mass
The left hand shortly before her return flight
Patient M. was hit by rockets during the war in Chechnya in September 2004 and was seriously injured. She was pre-treated at home and in Moscow.
In March 2007 she was referred to us via the German-Caucasian Society.
Both hands were functionally restricted.
The arms were scarred, along with the left ear, the left face and the region of the ankle joints.
Together with her mother, who was also treated by us, they were admitted between March and August 2007 and were operated on seven times.
The scars were reduced by removal and flap plastic surgery, the left hand function was improved with a radial flap.
She was admitted again together with her mother from January to April 2009 and was operated on three times with the laser.
They both flew back happy and content.
Patient Ma. comes from Chechnya.
In 1999, when she was 4 years old, her face and neck were seriously injured by a bomb. She suffered burns and open wounds from splinters. Her vision was also reduced in the right eye.
In 2003 she came to Germany together with her parents and her little brother. Her father was politically persecuted and the family was granted asylum.
She was referred to placet at the age of eight.
We started the treatment in 2004. First we performed several surgeries on the right side of the neck due to splinters and arterial injury.
Since 2006, Patient Ma. has undergone six plastic surgery operations, including hair transplantation and lower lip correction. To this day Patient Ma. regularly receives laser treatments to improve the scars.
In 2015 she passed her degree: an impressive achievement in her prehistory!
She is now studying
We continue to provide them with physical and psychological care.
Patient M., born in 2006, was referred to placet via the Peace Village. He was seriously injured by an explosion in his home country of Afghanistan and suffered severe burns to his face, hands, feet and torso. The nose was mutilated, its entrances almost completely closed. Both drumheads were destroyed by the blast trauma and severe infections of the upper airways and the auditory canals were the result. Patient M. could also not walk properly and could not grasp things with his hands.
He was operated on twelve times during his one-year stay in Berlin from September 2013 to September 2014. The eardrums and auditory canals were renovated and the nose was reconstructed so he can now breathe unhindered. The distortion of all the toes was eliminated, so he can now walk properly again, with the help of orthopaedic shoes.
He returned to his homeland and should come back to us for further restoration, especially to improve the hand function. The family believes, however, that the overall result of our work is so good that no further surgeries are necessary.
After our treatments:
Patient Mg. is four years old and came to us from Chechnya, and was referred to us by the German-Caucasian Society.
He arrived with his mother in Berlin in October 2010.
During the war, he was electrocuted in a house damaged by bombing.
The resulting injuries were to the right hand, part of the joints and skin were also damaged. As a result, he was handicapped as a right-handed person. Everyday tasks were hardly possible for him.
We operated five times and, together with physiotherapy and ergotherapy in Mrs Stapel’s manufactory, significantly improved the function of the hand.
In February 2011 mother and son flew back satisfied.
Patient N. is six years old and comes from Kyrgyzstan and was referred to us by the Peace Village. She suffered with severe burns on her stomach, back, genitals and anus. In addition, she had a scar contracture in the left knee and a shortening of the Achilles tendon with pointed foot, she could not walk properly.
We started treatment in April 2017 at the Emil von Behring Clinic and operated on her six times. The partial removal of the scars, flap plastics, skin transplants and medical needling significantly improved the situation. The Achilles tendon was lengthened so that she could walk properly again, eight ailing teeth are also restored.
She left us in March 2018 happier and much healthier.
Patient P. came to us from Iraq in August 2005. She was accompanied by her brother, who has lived in Germany for decades and is an engine engineer at Rolls Royce.
Patient P. was arrested in 1994 by Saddam Hussein’s henchmen and hung by her hands, ever since she has suffered from severe right-hand complaints.
We operated on her twice. The main nerve of the hand, the median nerve, was clearly narrowed from the inside and outside. The scars were removed under the microscope and the integrity of the nerve was reconstructed.
The discomfort is gone.
Patient Ra. is ten years old and comes from Kazakhstan, she was referred to us via The Peace Village.
As a small child she suffered severe burns to both legs, as a result, her lower legs and feet were grotesquely warped: The right lower leg and foot were twisted by 90 degrees to the side, the left one looked completely backwards, i.e. they are twisted by 180 degrees. There was also a contracting scar along the entire length of the left hind leg.
Patient Ra. was seen in several German clinics and they all saw no possibility of improvement with this extent of the deformity. We wanted to help the girl and accepted the challenge.
She received two microvascular flaps, various challenging adjustments of the lower leg and foot bones, local flaps and tendons – operations. Dr. Anja Helmers, Chief Physician of the Children’s Orthopaedics Department at the Spandau Waldkrankenhaus, has taken over the orthopaedic care and thus an essential part of the treatment. We thank her very much for this!
The firmness of the bones was reduced due to the absence of load and inadequate treatment at home caused by the injury. This made the therapy more difficult. We countered this with medication and physiotherapy.
We also provided the patient with custom-made shoes, special splints and a wheelchair.
We completed the first stage of treatment in February 2019. So far, the malposition, i.e. the external rotation, has been reduced to 45 degrees on the right and 30 degrees on the left.
She will come back in 2020 to be treated further.
Patient R. comes from Chechnya and suffered burns to both hands during armed conflicts.
We operated on him in April 2012 at Westend Hospital.
Since then he got insurance so placet no longer needs to treat, the Emil von Behring Clinic takes over the further therapy.
Patient S. is six years old, came to us from Chechnya together with his mother via the German-Caucasian Society.
In November 2005 his house was shot at with rockets and caught fire. He suffered burns along with his sister, his father died of a heart attack not long afterwards.
He had unstable burn scars on both hands with bondage and flexion contractures of the fingers.
In the year 2007 we operated on it twice and improved the hand function.
Patient Y. comes from a village in Chechnya, and was transferred by Unicef to placet.
Patient Y. was seriously injured on in 2006 in a cow pasture by an exploding mine in the face and body. His left ear was torn off, his face was disfigured by large scars, also thorax and abdomen have severe damages.
Between June and November 2008 Yles was operated on 6 times at the DRK-Klinikum Westend. The placet surgeons, with the help of Dr. Helmut Fischer from Stuttgart (many thanks!), completely reconstructed the left ear, implanted a tissue expander to expand intact tissue into the large thoracic scar and performed a scar excision on both thighs. The large wound on the neck was closed with a flap plastic.
The inspection on November 22 shows that all wounds have healed well. Yles can travel home accompanied by his father.
Patient Z. came to us at the age of eleven from a small village in Afghanistan. She suffered burns to her face, neck, both hands and stomach.
She was with us from April to August 2011.
We operated on her five times and repaired her teeth. Physiotherapy and physiotherapy have additionally improved the function of the hands.
Patient Ad. is eleven years old, comes from Afghanistan and was brought to us through the Children’s Village International.
In 2013, he suffered severe burns, especially on both hands and wrists. He received little treatment at home. He was left with massive contractures that rendered his hands unusable and produced clubbed hands.
We are starting treatment in 2020. It requires complex microvascular surgery. In 2021, we will provisionally conclude his treatment. He is to return to us when he is fully grown.
Patient Aq. is from Kabul and was 9 years old when Friedensdorf International brought him to Germany in 2005. Three years earlier he had been injured by the Taliban with incendiary bombs.
Unfortunately, he was not treated in his homeland which led to extensive, thick burn scars on his lower jaw, neck, shoulder and chest, which prevented him from turning his head completely and lifting his arm.
Patient Aq. was extensively operated on by placet 6 times in the Westend Clinic. After four and a half months he began his journey back home in August 2005. His immobile right arm is now fully functional and he can move his head, which he could not turn before. His scars have also healed nicely.
Patient Bi., 22 years old, was seriously injured in an arson attack in his home town in Chechnya. His mother, who ran into the fire several times to save her six children, died as a result of her burns.
Patient Bi.’s hands had swimming-skins between his fingers due to the burn, a crooked little finger on the right and flat scars.
We operated on him twice between April and September 2012.
As a result, Patient Bi.’s hands became functional again but has to wear compression gloves, which he received free of charge from the Orthopädisches Fachzentrum Berlin.
Patient Di. came from Uzbekistan and had a severe infection on the right lower eyelid and cheek, which was insufficiently treated due to localised factors and as a result, she could not close her eye.
She first visited us in December 2019 and stayed until February 2020 where we operated on her twice.
We lifted the lower eyelid by generous mobilization of the mid face with bony fixation at the edge of the orbit but unfortunately we could not completely remove the dark skin transplanted at home as the skin was too young for this, i.e. the tissue was youthful, firm and tight.
Together with camouflage, which covers the dark skin, we have been able to improve the condition greatly.
When she’s older, she’ll come back to us for further treatment.
Patient E., 17 years old, originating from Chechnya via the German-Caucasian Society with his mother suffered from the consequences of a mine explosion in 2002.
We first saw Patient E. in March 2014 with the following complaints:
The left half of the face was scarred, the mouth only opened slightly and the outer edge of the left ear was missing, the lobule is warped.
The neck, chest and forearms were scarred over the entire surface.
The left hand was functionally limited.
We operated on him five times in September 2014, among other things his neck was restored with a dermis replacement using his own skin.
Patient G. is 10 years old and comes from Uzbekistan. At the young age of one, she suffered severe burns.
She was referred to us via the Peace Village, we first saw her in October 2014.
The face was burned flat, the upper and lower eyelids on the left were scarred and the eye could not be closed.
The nose was twisted, their entrances almost closed. The left ear was damaged and both hands were impaired.
We have operated on her four times. She returned home in October 2015.
She was supposed to return to Berlin within the year to treat her nose, but she didn’t.
Patient Je. was 9 years old, when he came to visit us for the first time from Angola, referred to us via the peace village.
He suffered burns all over his body, the consequences of which were most severe on the left hand. So, on 12.6.2019 he received a micro vascular ALT flap on the back of his left hand which improved the hand function significantly.
Patient Je. was treated for the first time within the framework of a new cooperation at the Alfried Krupp Hospital in Essen, which we were really excited about!!!!
Private lecturer Dr. Daniel Tillkorn initiated this, took care of everything and operated on little Patient Je. with great support from Associate Professor. Dr. Jörg Hauser.
Picture: Before the operation
Picture: Directly after the procedure with the micro vascular flap
Picture: On Station with PD Dr. Hauser and PD Dr. Tilkorn
Patient Jo. comes to us via the Treatment Centre for Torture Victims from Uganda where he was persecuted.
As a result of a shell splinter injury, he had a conspicuous, physically and emotionally stigmatizing scar of the glabella and forehead.
He was referred to us in October 2005 and was operated on three times up to October 2006. We made the scar much less conspicuous and created a situation with which he can live well and helped to erase the memory of the event.
Patient L.T. was five years old when, in March 2015, she suffered severe burns which were partially treated at home. In 2017 she visited us, via Angola, with a referral from the peace village.
She was severely disfigured and disabled by the scars caused by the burn. The face was warped, the neck scars pulled the head down and the chest was transformed into a shell. The entire left upper extremity including the hand was rigid and suffered with loss of function and the right shoulder was scarred.
She first visited us between February and September 2017, during this time we operated on her eight times at the Martin Luther Hospital and Westend Clinic .
She received a pedunculated parascapular lobe at the neck, a pedunculated latissimus dorsi lobe in the left axilla, corrections of the lower jaw and corner of the mouth and the lower lip. We also greatly increased the function of her hand.
The biceps tendon in the left elbow was also lengthened, the large nerves (N. medianus and N. ulnaris) were microsurgically exposed and removed from their scars and the resulting defect was closed with a microvascular ALT flap
A further stay was required.
She returned to us in November 2018, unfortunately since her skin was contaminated with MRSA, she had to undergo a lengthy pre-treatment.
In March 2019, the function and form of the left hand was improved in the Martin Luther Hospital. The contracting scars of the back of the hand were excised and the extensor tendons were mobilized. An arthrolysis of the basic joints of fingers 4 and 5. also took place.
The resulting defect was covered with a microvascular ALT flap from the left thigh. At the same time the scar of the left axilla was removed and covered with full skin from the left groin.
The next procedure improved the mobility of the neck and scar traction on the neck and face with a parascapular flap
In November 2019 she flew back home after a total of eleven complex operations, function and appearance of the face, neck, arm and hand were all significantly improved.
Before the Treatment
Admittance for Stay I Raghad al-Shammari, 33, in her apartment. In 2010, the Iraqi was the victim of an attack in her home country of Baghdad, where a Molotov cocktail severely burned her. She has been in Berlin since the end of 2010 and is being treated with the help of the organization Placet. Berlin, 15.8.2012.
Admittance for Stay II
After the Treatment
Patient Ma. was referred to us via the German-Caucasian Society to accompany her daughter who had both received injuries
In November 2005 she was fired upon from the air by helicopters as she was on her way to Moscow to visit her daughter, who was hospitalized at the time. She did not receive treatment for her injuries.
When they were admitted to Berlin, both hands were hardly functional due to the injuries. The skin was dry and torn, including on the forearms.
In the face her forehead, cheeks and nose were scarred flatly.
Between March and August 2007 we operated three times, she then flew back with her daughter.
The second time she was admitted with her daughter from January to April 2009 and was operated on twice to her hand.
On discharge: form and function are improved.
Patient Mw. was born in Afghanistan in 1994 and lived with her family in Kabul. She has five siblings, four older brothers and one younger sister. As a baby, she suffered severe burns and mutilations in her face during a rocket attack. Her nose was mostly destroyed and she could not breathe. The eyelids of the right eye were damaged and the cheeks were also scarred, the mouth was warped, the upper lip was turned outwards.
She came to placet via Friedensdorf in March 2004.
We operated on her twelve times, using laser treatments to complement the therapy.
The nose was reconstructed with a forehead lobe, which gave it air again. Eyelids and mouth were restored.
We had to stop the treatment prematurely because she wanted to go home due to mental instability. We would have liked to have further improved the form and function of the nose.
She flew back in August 2004.
In August 2005 she returned, she was very quiet, almost scared. We took great care of her, especially her psyche, and operated on her five times.
Nose and eyebrows were treated.
The little five-year-old Patient Mo. came from the province of Ghazni, in the Taliban-occupied territory of Afghanistan. Friedensdorf International brought him to Germany and referred him to us in June 2016.
His two feet were severely scarred due to a burn and were pulled into a malposition so that he could hardly walk.
He needed seven surgeries, orthopaedic made-to-measure shoes and physiotherapy.
During the operations we used shark collagen to replace the dermis.
In January 2017, he returned home on foot.
That’s how he was admitted: All the toes and the right foot as a whole are pulled up resulting in difficulty walking
After the procedures: Everything is where it belongs
In the Westend Clinic with Nurse Winnie
Patient N.J. had a store in Afghanistan.
He was sitting peacefully in his store. Suddenly, in March 2021, a squad of Taliban came and shot around wildly, causing life-threatening injuries to him. His lower jaw, palate, oral cavity, teeth, inner nose, and the nerves for his left arm were destroyed.
He narrowly survived and was taken to a hospital by his relatives; there is no medical care in Kandahar. There he received basal care.
His brother, who has lived and worked in Hamburg for many years, brought him to Germany under adventurous and highly dangerous circumstances.
Here he arrived emaciated (he lost 30 kg) and debilitated, barely able to walk.
We have a long path to walk together.
Patient Na. was born in 1993 in Kabul, Afghanistan, he lived there with his parents and four siblings. In 2003 he came to Germany and a short time later to placet via Friedensdorf Oberhausen.
He suffered from severe burns of about 20% of his body surface. In Iran, he had undergone eye surgery two years earlier. placet performed nine operations on him between October 2003 and February 2004.
The neck contour and the reclination ability of the head was restored, scar prominence on the chest, shoulders and arms were significantly reduced. After removal of the scarring on the right cheek, the eyelid could be closed completely.
During his stay with us, he received a prominent visit from the Afghan ambassador.
On departure to his home in February 2004, Patient Na. was cheerful, laughed and joked. He now speaks excellent German.
How he was admitted.
After our treatment:
He’s number one!
Visit of the Afghan ambassador.
At the age of 13, Patient O. was seriously injured as a child soldier during the war in northern Uganda that had been going on for 20 years. A bullet pierced his head from behind, shredding his nose and parts of his face. The nasal septum, bony border of the right eye socket and left middle ear were completely destroyed. Respiration was also impaired.
Three operations in Nairobi, where Patient O. lived for 3 years in the SOS Children’s Village, were not particularly successful .
In November 2005 he came to Berlin and was admitted into the care of placet. One month later he was operated on for the first time in the DRK-Klinikum Westend. In a further seven surgeries, which extended over a period of eight months, we succeed in reconstructing Patient O.’s nose and largely correcting the facial deformities.
With new self-confidence, Patient O. started his journey home to Africa in July 2006 accompanied by a companion. Within the framework of the SOS structures he will continue to go to school there and later start training as an electrical engineer.
Dr. Helmut Fischer from Stuttgart has provided us with considerable support in restoring the nose. We thank him for this.
With a new nose and a new look: Cool!
Back home in the SOS Children’s Village
Patient Ra. is a bank clerk and mother of two children in Baghdad, she was seriously injured in an arson attack outside her house on 03.11.2010. A religious fanatic exploded a petrol barrel with a Molotov cocktail, the flames burned her face, upper body, arms and hands.
As there were no special departments for burn injuries in Iraqi hospitals, the family sold all their belongings to finance a transport to Germany. On 29.12.2010 Patient Ra. was brought to Berlin on a special medical flight and arrived more dead than alive.
In the burn centre of the Unfallkrankenhaus Berlin (UKB) intensive medical, life-saving measures (skin transplants on back and breast) were carried out, 50 percent of the body surface was open.
On 16.02.2011 placet took over the further treatment of the severe burn injury.
In the DRK Clinic Westend and the Behring Clinic we performed 36 operations to restore a human face to Patient Ra., to improve her vision (she was blinded by the attack, a corneal transplant made her see better), to repair the severe defects on the ventral thorax, to dissolve the contractures on the limbs, to close the extensive burns. Among other things, she received two microvascular flaps at the neck to dissolve the scarring fixation of the head to the trunk. Also a number of other therapeutic measures were and are necessary to allow Patient Ra.’s life to improve: special glasses, physiotherapy, epitheses (see below) for the burned ears, splints, etc.
On 17.07.2013, Patient Ra.’s family, who had taken care of her during the whole treatment period, filed an application for asylum. She leaves the placet accommodation to move into her own apartment.
The patient received new ears in the form of epitheses in 2015 as they were completely destroyed on both sides by the attack. The ears of her sister served as a model, impressions were made and these were shaped, adapted and fixed in a complex procedure for Patient Ra.. The project was financed by the Losito Kressmann-Zschach – Foundation and made possible by the Institute for Anaplastology in Potsdam: Daniela Hering. Thank you very much!
At the end of 2015, we started reconstructing her nose. It was reconstructed from tissue from the forehead (an expander created the necessary excess) and cartilage from the ribs. This four-step project was completed in 2016.
In 2017 and 2018 we corrected the neck, left hand and nose.
In 2021 we again correct the neck and corners of the mouth. Severely burned people need lifelong corrections.
Further procedures will follow.
How she arrived from Berlin Burn Unit
After many many operations
Together with her sister, who lovingly looks after her
Rayyan is seven years old and came to us for the first time with her mother via the German-Caucasian Society in August 2007.
On 1.9.2004 a Russian bomb hit her house, luckily the father rescued the child from the flames. Immediately after the accident she was treated for 3 months in the incineration department of the Groszny hospital. In 2006 she underwent two local surgeries by doctors courtesy of the organization “Doctors without Borders”.
At their admittance, the following findings were found:
- Flat prominent scars on the face.
- Scarred upper and lower lip.
- Eyebrow right absent. Right eye difficult to close.
- Left ear: Helix anterior absent. Apostasis due to scarred distortion. Lobulus fixed and distorted.
- Right ear: Lobulus fixed and distorted
- Left arm: Flat scars. Functions properly.
- Left hand: Dorsal flat scars. Functions properly.
- Right wrist: Flat scars, regular function
- Breast: Flat contracting prominent scar left > right. Breast growth will be impaired.
We operated eight times: on the left ear, on the right wrist, on the chest, on the lower lip, on the left arm.
In December she flew back home.
The second time she was with us from January to June 2009.
Lower lip, chin and chest were treated.
The third stay lasts from July to August 2010.
Ear, chest and left arm are corrected, Dr. Finner transplants her hair.
This time we operated twice on the breast between August and December 2011.
This is Patient Ry.’s fifth visit with her mother. She is now 18 years old, has graduated from high school and is studying German and English.
Both arrived in October 2018 and stayed until January 2019.
This time the face and chest were corrected
We’ve operated on her three times:
- The scars on the face were treated with medical needling.
- The position and shape of the earlobes have been improved.
- We surgically corrected the bulging and warped lips and inserted skin grafts.
- We corrected the shape of the barely developed and warped breast, narrowed the scars and increased the volume with her own fat.
We’ll keep in touch.
How she was admitted
That’s what she looks like now.
Patient Ru. was injured in a terrorist attack on a school in Beslan in Chechnya in 2004, a burning roof fell on him.
He was first treated in Rastov on the Don and in Israel and came to us with his mother via the German-Caucasian Society.
Upon his arrival in Berlin in 2005, the following picture was taken:
Flat hypertrophic scars right upper arm, shoulder. Elevation of the right arm severely limited by scar traction. Flat, non-hypertrophic scars on the right back with dyspigmentation. Flat hypertrophic scars right knee lateral. Endgradely limited stretching of the right knee due to scar traction. Flat scar right ankle joint.
We operated on him twice and significantly reduced the number of scars.
Patient Sa. is 11 years old and came to us from near Kunduz, Afghanistan, in 2012.
In 2009 she suffered previously untreated scalds of the face, hands and forearms, in particular:
Flat dyspigmented scars of the right half of the face. Scar-related extensive alopecia temporally right. Scarred ectropion of the right lower eyelid. Scarred everting distortion of the right upper lip.
On the right hand: Narrow fixation of the fingers 3 to 5 in flexion position with fixation of the end joints in the palm of the hand. Scarred syndactyly of the fingers 3 to 5 up to the middle joints.
We operated on her five times and she happily returned home to her family.
The hand with fixed contractures of the fingers 3 to 5
After our procedures, the fingers are straight.
Back home with her father. Both are happy.
In Odessa, Patient Yu. had petrol poured on to her by the Mafia and then set on fire. This resulted in life-threatening injuries: grotesque disfigurement of the face, partial loss of the ears, distortion of the chest and neck, contractures and loss of function of both hands. The first life-saving measures were carried out in Odessa. Then the parish of Odessa and a private person from Aschaffenburg established the contact to placet.
From January to April 2003 Patient Yu. was operated on 10 times by five plastic surgeons in the DRK-Klinikum Westend. Skin transplants and tissue stretching were performed. Lips, nose tip and left ear were reconstructed, webbed hands removed.
When not being operated on, Patient Yu. was privately accommodated and intensively cared for. The mobility of the hands restored by the operations was further improved by physiotherapy.
On April 28, 2003 Patient Yu. was able to fly home to Odessa..
How she arrived
… and how she left after three months …
At the make up station with René Koch.
She sent us this picture in 2009.
Patient Ze. was seriously injured in a terrorist attack by Islamists on a school in Beslan in September 2004. As she was taking her son to school she was caught in a booby trap and suffered injuries to her head, chest, abdomen and pelvis. She also developed a post-traumatic psychosyndrome.
She came to us for the head injuries. There was a scar on the left cheek, the left jaw was destroyed and five teeth were missing.
We treated them together with Dr. Gnauert and Prof. Dr. Dr. Michael Stiller: The jaw was built up and implants were placed.
Besides the surgeries, we took care of her psyche.
The second stay lasted from February to October 200 where the orthodontic and dental treatment were completed.
La., 32, suffered an accident in his home country of Gambia in 2014. His lower leg was severely injured. Since then, he can no longer practise his profession as a fisherman and has had to vegetate on the edge of subsistence.
La., 32, suffered an accident in his home country of Gambia in 2014. His lower leg was severely injured. Since then, he can no longer practise his profession as a fisherman and has had to vegetate on the edge of subsistence.
He was inadequately treated at home: The open wound was infected (worms), the bone was exposed.
Thanks to the commitment of his carer Gabriele Irungu and a renowned German politician, he received a visa.
We treated him in 2022 at the Alfried Krupp Hospital in Essen. The wound was cleaned several times and the defect was closed with a microvascular flap from the back.
His life can begin anew.
Patient Wa. is 10 years old and comes from Afghanistan.
In 2019, he suffered a severe burn during a military operation. His face, eyelids, mouth, ears, neck, hands and legs are affected.
We are treating him.
Pregnant 20-year-old Ani. from Somalia was pushed into an open fire by her husband as an expression of extreme domestic violence. She suffered severe burns to her face, arms and chest, losing her child in the process.
There is no medical care in her home country. So she came to Germany.
We are caring for her physically and emotionally.
As a one-year-old child, the now 11-year-old Nay. got caught on a red-hot floor cooker. His feet were badly burned, he was not treated at the time -as is so often the case-, nor was his pain.
His feet are grotesquely disfigured. We are working on him.
7-year-old Hi. comes from Afghanistan, suffered scalds to his neck and armpits in 2018 and was not treated in a country where medical care is depressed.
Our friend Dr André Borsche and his colleagues treated him at the Diakonie Hospital in Bad Kreuznach from March to June 2022.
The patient is happy ….
IBAN: DE19 1008 0000 0824 0292 00
Contact Persons in Germany
c/o Frank W. Peter, MD, PhD
Klinik am Wittenbergplatz
Bayreuther Str. 36
D – 10789 Berlin
T +49. 30. 86 09 86 0
F +49. 30. 86 42 33 36