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Niya

Niya is only 16 years old, but several weeks after the birth of her first baby she had surgery for a total hysterectomy. Niya took care of herself during her pregnancy and grew a 8lb 9oz baby.  Unfortunately her baby was too big for her to birth naturally and she ended up with a C-section.  C-sections, though common in the US, carry significant risks in Malawi and increase the risk of serious life-threatening infections.  Days after giving birth, Niya became increasing ill, her abdomen swelled and she returned to the hospital.  Clinicians there did a laparoscopic surgery to determine the cause of her swollen abdomen and found that her uterus was necrotic.  The infection was so severe and had continued unchecked for so long that her uterine muscle had completely died as was beginning to decompose inside of her.  She had an emergency hysterectomy.  Soon after the second surgery she experienced severe nausea and vomiting and was diagnosed with a bowel obstruction.  She underwent additional treatment for the bowel obstruction.  It was a traumatic and life changing birth experience.  She would need to learn to care for her new baby, care for her wounds, and strive to accept the loss of her fertility. Joyful Motherhood nurses have been following her, supporting her as a new teen mom, counseling her about her hysterectomy and encouraging her. Her baby is growing well and she is planning to return to school soon.