When faced with health problems in a place with limited care, many learn how to live with pain and hardships. But for 42 year old Albert, living in Daru of the Western Province in Papua New Guinea, his small infection turned dangerous after years of suffering.
Albert’s jaw had become severely enlarged, due to a tumour and infection in his mouth that had lingered for years. Most nights, he would awaken several times to drain his mouth from the foul liquids emerging from his wound. Not only was it painful, but the tumour leaked and became unsightly on the outside of his cheek as well. After visiting the local hospital for x-rays and treatment, Albert was told that he was outside of their help.
Several days before coming on board the ship for treatment, he happened to see one of the YWAM dentists at his church. Filled with hope, he pinched his wife and declared, “That’s who’s going to fix my problem!”
Upon Albert’s visit, dentists Craig Waterhouse and Jonathan Broadbent were immediately aware of the abnormality of his swollen jaw. They got to work quickly, discovering that Albert’s wisdom tooth had grown in sideways and had fused itself to a tumour, producing massive infection. With great care, the dentistry team was able to remove the tooth and tumour, leaving a hole in Albert’s jaw the width of three fingers.
Dentists revealed to Albert and his family that the tumour had probably been growing for at least a decade. Thankfully, its’ roots had been attached to the tooth that was now extracted. Albert was told his swelling would go down over time and his mouth would now be able to heal itself. Two days later, when Albert returned for his follow-up, he reported only good news. His infection down and his spirits lifted, he was truly a new man.