Turkey, Health

Turkish doctors remove brain tissue from toddler’s head

Couple ecstatic to again be able to hold Baby Elif, who had been diagnosed with encephalocele

Sengul Oymak   | 18.07.2019
Turkish doctors remove brain tissue from toddler’s head

KOCAELI, Turkey

A Turkish couple expressed joy Wednesday after doctors successfully removed 1.25 kilograms of neural tissue from their two-and-a-half-year-old daughter's head.

Baby Elif, the daughter of Arzu and Ali Akin Hidir, was discharged from the neurosurgery clinic at Marmara University’s Training and Research Hospital in Pendik, Istanbul.

The couple was ecstatic after their baby was back in their arms after surgery was performed by neurosurgery expert Dr. Adnan Dagcinar.

Elif was diagnosed with encephalocele, also known as cranium bifidum, a protrusion of brain tissue through a congenital fissure in the skull, when Arzu was four months pregnant.

She rejected doctors' advice to terminate the pregnancy.

“Thanks to social media, we made our voice heard. We were relieved when doctors at Marmara University said our baby can survive,” said Arzu.

“Thank God, now I can hold her in my arms and dress her up. It's like her second birth. I appreciate everyone who supported us in any manner,” she told Anadolu Agency.

The process seemed to speed up after they appealed to the public through social media. Elif's father, Ali, said he still could not believe his daughter was treated so quickly.

“My daughter recovered so fast. Now we are at home filled with happiness that words can’t express,” he said. “This is the first time I am holding her in my arms since she was born."

Elif will undergo more surgery after her first birthday, according to Ali.

Her parents said they are grateful for the support from their fellow Turks and officials at the Ministry of Health and lawmaker Mehmet Taytak from the opposition MHP party, who treated them as family members.

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