Eman Ahmed had not stepped out of her first floor flat in Alexandria، Egypt for 25 years. Two years ago her movements had ceased، confining her to her bedroom and a view only of her ceiling. Now، 5،000 km away at upscale Saifee Hospital، Eman is no longer forced to look at the top of her hospital room، as the 37-year-old Eman can pick herself up، doctors said. In the age of technology، language is also no barrier. Eman and her doctors، are using Google Translate to communicate during her treatment، The Indian Express reported.
“We want her to be able to do mass movement. First it was lifting her hand، followed by her arms. Then was the act of gripping and then by holding something or someone to pull herself up. She can now pull herself up with something that is anchored،” said Dr Swati Sanghvi، head of the advanced physiotherapy and sports rehabilitation department at Saifee Hospital.
Less than two weeks since her admission on February 11، Eman has lost 50 kg، more than half her excess fluid collection، which is at least 70-100 kg of her total weight. Doctors believe that Eman is improving by “leaps and bounds”.
Believed to be the world’s heaviest woman، Eman has been admitted to Saifee Hospital، and is being treated for sleep apnea، hypothyroid، diabetes، hypertension، kidney problems، fluid retention and most importantly obesity. With her first surgery less than two weeks away، doctors said that the main target is to shrink the size of 37-year-old Egyptian national to be able to take her to the operation theatre. Eman is currently 151 cm wide، while، the width of the elevator is 141 cm.
Eman has been put on a high protein and fibre diet to systematically reduce her weight. Doctors aim to bring down Eman’s weight by 200 kg in 2017. She weighed around 500 kg at the time of her admission. Doctors said that Eman is on a strict 1،200-calorie per day diet routine، where she wakes up at 7.30 am and is fed every two hours. Unlike earlier، where she could barely sleep for 3 hours، Eman even has an eight hour sleep cycle now.
Admitted to the first floor of the annex building on the hospital premises، Eman is undergoing two sessions of physiotherapy every day. “Initially we did 30-45 minutes of physiotherapy with her. Most of them were passive exercises than active ones، since the functioning of lungs is low. Gradually، we have increased the time period and now we can do a session for even 90 minutes،” Dr Sanghvi added. Doctors said that they are not pushing Eman much as she has hardly moved for several years. Her movements of upper body، which is now more flexible، is believed to be better than her lower body. A matrix rhythm therapy is being conducted to relax Eman and help relieve her lymphedema and improve the circulation of oxygenated blood in her body.
Though، Eman is already undergoing speech therapy doctors are using various translate mobile apps mainly Google Translate to communicate with Eman.
“She only speaks in Arabic and at times in a manner that only her younger sister can decipher. We use Google Translate as it translate our English instructions to Arabic for Eman to listen and follow. This method has worked well for her. She lets us know what gives her pain، by this technique،” a senior doctor said.