Nora: bombing victim
Nora was seriously injured by a missile that fell outside the entrance to Al-Thawra Hospital in Al-Hudaydah, Yemen, as she arrived by bus with friends.
Nora with HI's psychologist, Fathen | © Feida/HI
Nora, 30, is a single mother. She used to earn a living doing housework in Al-Hudaydah, one of the cities worst affected by the fighting.
On 2 August 2018, the entrance to Al-Thawra Hospital in Al-Hudaydah was hit in an air raid. Nora had just arrived by bus with friends to visit a relative in hospital.
"After the explosion, I crawled out of the bus,” she says. “I called to my sister and friends but there was no reply. Then I saw my sister, who was pregnant. She was dying.”
“The first aircraft made no noise but the second made a familiar sound. When people recognised the whistle of a fighter plane in the sky, they started screaming: ‘Run! They’re going to drop another bomb’”
Everyone tried to flee but a lot of people were injured by shrapnel in the second explosion. One was wounded in the head and heart; another had his face ripped to shreds... I was so shocked I didn’t feel the pain. I didn't immediately realise that my right leg had been torn off in the first explosion."
Nora had her leg amputated at Al-Thawrah Hospital in Al-Hudaydah. Transferred to Sana'a, she was operated on a second time by the surgical team so that her stump could one day be fitted with a prosthesis.
Support from HI
She was immediately followed up by HI’s teams who gave her rehabilitation and psychological support. The organisation provided her with crutches, a toilet chair, a hygiene kit and equipment to clean her stump herself.
"We taught her how to manage the pain and ways to reduce it. We did some muscle strengthening exercises and then walked with the crutches. We have also massaged her scar: this helps prevent stiffness and keeps the scar flexible to prevent a future sore or painful spot, especially since it is partly on the stump and therefore often ends up on areas in contact with the prosthesis socket," says HI’s physiotherapist, Feida. At the same time, one of our psychologists provided her with follow-up care to help her overcome the traumatic shock caused by the explosion, her amputation and the death of her sister."
Nora continues to receive rehabilitation care. Her stump has healed well and she is ready to be fitted with a prosthesis in the next few days.