“It was during my K-2 summit attempt in 2014 when I noticed that I was facing a serious health problem” recalled, Samina Baig.
Samina Baig is a professional mountain climber, and has been prone to injuries during her expeditions. However, this time it was different. She had first noticed the sharp pain in the year 2012. It extended from her neck, down along her left arm. Dismissing it as insignificant at that time, Samina chose to relieve the pain with medications and hoped it would subside. It was only during the K-2 summit attempt, when she faced a minor accident, that she was forced to seek medical advice for the persistent pain.
Samina initially got herself medically examined from doctors residing in Islamabad. Unable to provide an accurate diagnosis, she then sought medical advice from the internationally trained medical faculty working with the Musculoskeletal and Sports Medicine Service Line at The Aga Khan University Hospital.
Samina communicated her symptoms to Dr. Masood Umer, a surgical professional working with the Musculoskeletal and Sports Medicine Service Line at The Aga Khan University Hospital. She described that she felt a current like shooting pain down her arm and was losing sensation in the ring and little finger of her left hand. Dr. Masood immediately diagnosed the physical discomfort as Ulnar Nerve Entrapment at the left elbow. He explained that the medical complaint will require an immediate surgery.
A medical team comprising of 1 surgeon, 1 surgical technician, 2 residents and anesthetists conducted a surgery lasting up to two hours. The surgical procedure included making an incision under Samina’s left triceps, to free the entrapped nerve.
The surgery was a success and was able to provide 80% relief to Samina, who said,
“After the surgery I am mentally confident about carrying out my expeditions without the stress of any physical discomfort”.
Samina was advised to rest for three months. She was also prescribed pain killers to settle the nerve down.
Commenting on the services at The Aga Khan University Hospital, Karachi, Samina said,
“The system at The Aga Khan University Hospital is commendable. From management to the services, I would declare it as the number one hospital in the country”.
Samina has since resumed her trekking activities from the mid of January this year. She will be continuing her affiliation with the Pakistan Youth Outreach Program, which is involved in conducting mountaineering training and ski camps. Samina hopes to encourage the youth of the country to pursue their passions like she did and strive for personal growth and excellence.