This is the 5-year-old boy set to walk again after his family was given a choice between saving his life or his limbs when his legs were crushed under a 10-tonne lorry.
Picture Credits: AsiaWire
Zuo Wenshan, head orthopaedic surgeon at Huai’an First People’s Hospital, has performed eight life-saving surgeries on the young survivor named Zheng Fangning, aged five, since receiving him in critical condition on 24th January.
Both the boy’s lower limbs had been crushed beyond recognition, with all the bones, nerves and vessels in his left leg having been completely severed and kept in place only by sections of skin.
He was one of three people crushed under the heavy goods vehicle in Lianshui County in East China’s Jiangsu Province, and he was transferred to the larger city of Huai’an after local doctors said they were unable to operate on such severe injuries, telling the family they would have to choose between saving his legs or his life.
Doctor Zuo boldly proclaimed he would “save both” when Fangning’s family relayed the diagnosis from the county hospital.
The medic revealed that, with little time to spare, he pulled the young boy’s bones back in place with his hands and sutured his blood vessels on a stretcher in the emergency department.
Once the boy showed signs of blood flowing back into his legs, Zuo was confident he could avoid having to amputate his limbs, and Fangning was wheeled into priority surgery two hours later.
Zuo, who admitted his desperate methods were “rough”, recalled: “The child was crushed under a 10-tonne lorry. He was one of three victims, two of whom were killed.
“The child was saved by his grandmother, who pulled him out from under the wreckage. He would’ve died otherwise.
“The complex surgery to reattach his bones, nerves and vessels took about five hours.
“He was already unconscious due to shock. Add that to the traumatic injuries he had already sustained, and the probability of death becomes very high.”
Fangning has undergone seven more surgeries since and is making a remarkable recovery.
Doctor Zuo said the five-year-old can be discharged in half a month after one final operation.
It is still unclear, however, how much physical therapy the boy will require in order to regain full function of his limbs.