Midwife Aisling volunteering in the Philippines
A YOUNG woman from Clochán-Bhréannainn, who is training to be a missionary midwife, is currently helping to save lives as a volunteer in Tacloban in the Philippines.
Aisling Lynch (29) went to Tacloban to help in the aftermath of Typhoon Haiyan, which is known by locals in the region as 'Yolanda'.
There she has encountered first-hand the terrible suffering the people of the region have had to endure following the disaster.
One such experience was that of a woman who had gone into labour outside the hospital at which Aisling was volunteering.
With a line of 300 people outside waiting to be assessed, Aisling identified herself as a midwife and went outside to help.
"Myself and the medical team ran outside and sure enough there was a woman with her family and a screaming new-born," she said.
"The baby was pink, crying and had great tone so we put the mother and baby on the stretcher to be brought inside for a closer look. Once inside I got to the business of assessing the woman for blood loss then I got ready to deliver, what I thought to be, the placenta which was visible.
"But the minute I touched it, I realised it did not feel like any placenta I had ever touched before.
It was then Aisling realised that what was on the blanket before her was not the woman's placenta but the woman's actual womb.
The West Kerry midwife consulted the medical team's surgeon who confirmed that yes indeed, the woman has a prolapsed uterus and that Aisling needed to put it back in.
"With a deep breath I got down to the business of replacing this woman's uterus back inside to its rightful place – we observed just to make sure it stayed put, it thankfully did," she said.
Thanks to Aisling's prompt action, baby and mother were soon doing just fine.
"The baby was then brought over to his mum and started breastfeeding immediately. In the space of less than five minutes, everyone was stable and happy," said Aisling.
"Mother and baby got transferred to a nearby hospital that had OB/GYN on their team and from what I heard, both mother and baby were fine. All in all, a fantastic outcome for everyone involved!"
Aisling is the daughter of local artist Deirdre Lynch of Ealaintóirí an Leith-Triúigh, who is also a nurse.
"She is a tough cookie!" said Deirdre.
"Aisling intends to eventually travel to Nepal, where she previously worked for some time in an orphanage, to help and advise women on birth control [and other reproductive health issues."
"I am very proud of her."