Nyeri woman in agony as medics wary of removing needle from daughter’s jaw


Dentist tray with Instruments
Dentist tray with Instruments

A woman in Nyeri is agonising the pain of her five-year-old daughter who has been living with a needle lodged inside her jaw for the last nine months.

after a procedure to extract her tooth went awry.

Jacinta Muthoni’s twin daughter was taken to Huruma mission hospital in Nanyuki town by her grandmother Jacinta Wanjiku on January 24.

The girl was to have one of her incisors extracted but the procedure has since remained a nightmare for the child and her family after the anaesthetic needle broke inside the jaw.

The 30-millimeter needle could not be immediately removed making her situation even worse.

Following the incident, Huruma Hospital referred the girl to Nanyuki Teaching and Referral Hospital.

However, she was again referred to Nyeri Level Five Hospital and later she taken to Kenyatta National Hospital in Nairobi.

All the institutions were unable to remove the lodged needle.

Speaking to journalists at her home in Mureru in Kieni East Sub county of Nyeri, Muthoni said that she has since taken her daughter to countless number of medical institutions both private and public seeking to have the needle removed.

However, she could not raise the amount required to carry out the delicate operation.

“Huruma hospital insisted that my daughter did not need surgery to have the needle removed but I felt otherwise that’s when they started giving me a cold shoulder. At times the hospital administrator would chase me away if I went to enquire about the case,” she said.

X-ray scans of the girls show the needle still lodged on her left side of the upper jaw with fears that it could be moving towards the child’s brain.

Huruma mission hospital has been cagey on offering more information regarding the case and at some point even barred journalists from accessing the facility.

The altercation at the institution saw some members of the Press detained for almost an hour with them only being released upon intervention of Nanyuki police.

The hospital management had accused the scribes of taking photos at the institution without permission.

Nanyuki Catholic Diocese Legal Officer Fr. David Mutahi, who later agreed to speak to the media over the matter, said that Huruma Hospital was willing to assist the girl and that’s why it facilitated her move to KNH.

“Dental surgeons at Kenyatta (KNH) assured us and the girl’s family the needle was not life threatening but the mother keeps on insisting that she wants it removed,” he said.

Fr. Mutahi denied claims that the institution had turned a cold shoulder on the family and added that Muthoni had been advised to seek alternative medical opinion elsewhere.

He further added that if it turned out that the surgery was necessary, Huruma Hospital would foot the cost.

Muthoni has rubbished the legal officer’s statement saying: “They never offered any assistance and that’s why we have been struggling to raise money for my daughter to be treated. I have sold all my goats to take her for tests in various hospitals.”

According to her, one of the private hospitals in the country asked her to part with Ksh.150,000 to have the needle surgically removed.

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Story By Sharon Nkonge
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