30 JULY 2013

Doctor Ingo Melcher

Dr Ingo Melcher, head of the musculoskeletal surgery group of the Charité Campus Virchow clinic of the Humboldt University of Berlin, came to the Dmitry Rogachev Centre for Children’s Haematology in early July 2013. Dr Melcher is a famous surgeon skilled in minimally invasive (non-traumatic) bone surgery techniques capable of immediate reconstruction of damaged bones. This is only the latest of many visits, as he regularly comes to the Centre in order to perform complex operations, removing tumour-afflicted bones and immediately replacing them with special prosthetics. Russia as yet has no specialists trained in this technique, but it does have a well-equipped surgery located at the Centre, and surgeons ready and willing to learn.

The professor’s visits to Russia are much cheaper than sending ill children to a clinic in Berlin. In addition to saving money, they also allow Russian surgeons to familiarise themselves with unique foreign technologies and gain valuable experience. This is why the Gift of Life foundation pays for Dr Melcher’s visits as part of its programme to bring foreign doctors to Russia.

During his last visit, Dr Melcher performed two operations. On the 2nd of July, he operated on Ruslan Amshokov, a ten-year old boy with sarcoma of the left femur. Dr Melcher performed plastic surgery of the left crus. The operation was a success, and Ruslan is already walking on crutches.

On the 3rd of July, he operated on Ekaterina Bakhteeva, an 18-year old girl with Ewing’s sarcoma of the right ilium. Thanks to the unique surgical technique, all of Ekaterina’s vital organs were left intact. The surgery was successful, and Ekaterina is already starting to walk on her own.

We are deeply grateful to Dr Melcher for his unique operations, which allow the children in our care to avoid disability and return to fully healthy lives. We would also like to thank all our donors from the bottom of our hearts for helping us pay for Dr Melcher’s visits. Thank you!