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20th Mission CAMEROON

On Tuesday, the 14th of February 2017, a four member team of Heart Doctors flew to NDjamena in Chad through Istanbul; they spent the night at NDjamena and next morning they continued southwards by road till they reached the Chadian city Bongor. Then by pirogue they crossed the river separating Chad from Cameroon and reached the Cameroonian riverside town Yagoua in the Far North Province of Cameroon. At Yagoua the team purchased bottled drinking water and certain foods to prepare meals for the mission. Then they left for Katrang by car moving on primitive unpaved or nonexistent roads.

Thus, in the afternoon, the team arrived at Katrang and settled at the huts (boucaroos) Heart Doctors had built years ago to use them for their missions in a place where there is no appropriate building to use as a shelter.

The military authorities of Cameroon sent again two soldiers of the Rapid Intervention Brigade (BIR) to protect the mission against possible attacks by Boko Haram.

During the next five days medical services were offered by the team to a great number of patients who flocked at that place from the wider area of Katrang. This time too many people came from neighboring Chad - they had to walk for at least 8 kilometers from the frontiers to reach the dispensary. Enough medicines had been transferred by the team from Athens. The premises of the Greek Orthodox Church of Saint Apostles were used for the dispensary.

Many serious health problems were observed: malaria, cahexia, tuberculosis, ascites. Other diseases were: infections of the respiratory system, gastroenteritis, helminthiasis, arthralgias, low back pains, skin diseases, conjunctivitis, leprosy.

A case of malaria of an adult female suffering for eight days with high fever, headache, chillss and many everyday vomiting, was initially faced with injectable treatment - soon the woman was freed from the symptoms. After being given enhanced liquid food and additional oral treatment, she was sent to her residence by a motor cycle. Her family and neighbors greeted with great joy the recovery and sent us many thanks.

The well known seasonal dust of the Sahara desert, in January and February ( called "armadan"), combined with a mild wind, was responsible for many infections.

Due to the mild wind blowing at night, the temperature dropped significantly at night and it was cold.

The Greek Airline Aegean had given us a big suitcase containing milk for babies. We offered it to malnourished mothers who had not enough milk to breastfeed their babies. The same suitcase contained a lot of candies for older children. All were very happy to receive these gifts.

On the 22nd of February the team returned to NDjamena, and then to Athens through Constantinople.

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