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Mercy in action

For more than 14 years, urogynaecologist Dr Judith Goh has travelled the world helping women with pelvic dysfunction in developing countries by performing life changing surgery.

When 41 year-old Sharifan Nishi underwent a total abdominal hysterectomy it was complicated by a vesico-vaginal fistula (an abnormal communication between the bladder and vagina) which meant she was completely incontinent and constantly leaked urine.

Dr Goh said Sharifan, a mother of three who hails from Northern India, was unable to leave her home to work after two unsuccessful operations to repair the fistula.

“I was asked to assist by Dr Flora Gastrell, an obstetrician and gynaecologist from New Zealand and Dr Nathan Grills, a GP from Melbourne who had worked with Sharifan in India,” Dr Goh said.

On 25 June 2009, Sharifan was brought to Australia to undergo a vaginal repair of her fistula at Mater Private Hospital Redland.

“Mater’s Director of Clinical Services, Cheryl Clayton and the Mater Foundation kindly agreed to raise funds and assist with hospital costs, while assistant surgeon Dr Hannah Krause, anaesthetist Dr Victor Avramov and pelvic floor physiotherapist Michelle Kenway each donated their time and skills,” Dr Goh continued.

During her two and a half week recovery, Sharifan stayed with Sr Marcia Maranta who kept her busy each day sight seeing, shopping and visiting, along with her many visits to the hospital.

“Sharifan is now back in India with her family and recovering well. Her fistula has healed,” Dr Goh finished.

Sharifan Nishi treated at Mater Private Hospital Redland

Sharifan Nishi treated at Mater Private Hospital Redland.


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