LUTON burns survivor Shamiam Arif is about to become a VIP - a very important patient.
The nine-year-old Foxdell Junior pupil will undergo intensive investigations later this month at London’s Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH).
These are in preparation for major surgery to insert a plate in her skull, which was burned down to the lining of her brain after a candle fell into her cot when she was a baby.
Eminent surgeon Jonathan Britto of the hospital’s craniofacial unit will perform the challenging procedure.
Shamiam wears a helmet at all times for protection.
The madcap tomboy also lost both hands in the devastating blaze – although she’s adapted well with the two ‘fingers’ fashioned in the Krukenberg Procedure undertaken by her beloved ‘Uncle Doctor,’ consultant plastic surgeon Peter Dziewulski, who has waived his fees to treat this little VIP.
Shamiam’s mum Tahira has mixed feelings about the forthcoming operation.
“I’m frightened,” she admitted. “She is so small and it is such a big thing.”
But she has faith in Allah and the dedicated team who will carry out the surgery.
Shamiam will be admitted to Starfish ward for two days of assessments including audiological, orthoptic, psychological, dental, opthalmic, language and feeding and craniofacial.
She has already had a head scan.
Everyone who meets this captivating child of courage wants to help.
Lawyer Khuram Liaquat has volunteered his services to the family.
First Capital Connect provide free first class travel for their frequent trips to GOSH.
And the Herald&Post has been at the forefront of the appeal to raise money to cover her medical costs.
Please help us help her – send a cheque to United for the Needy (Shamiam Arif Appeal), 146 Gregory Boulevard, Nottingham NG7 5JE.