Adelaida’s life-changing double hip operation is a success

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Adelaida’s life-changing double hip operation is a success

A young Tanzanian health care worker has had a successful operation in Norwich to restore the use of both of her legs thanks to the work of a Norfolk Catholic surgeon and a surgical team from the Norfolk & Norwich University Hospital. Keith Morris reports.

Adelaida underwent the life-changing bilateral hip replacement surgery on June 17 performed by consultant orthopaedic surgeon John Nolan and a surgical team who all worked for free.

John said: “I am pleased to say everything went according to plan and following an uneventful post-operative recovery, Adelaida has now been discharged from hospital and has returned to staying with her hosts, who are parishioners from St John’s Cathedral.

John said “Adelaida has repeatedly asked me to pass on her thanks to everyone involved and to all the incredibly generous people who have made this possible.”

John, also a parishioner at St John’s, met 23-year-old Adelaida during a recent visit to Tanzania thanks to his uncle Fr Francis who has been a Catholic missionary priest there for 50 years.

John said: “Adelaida was training as a healthcare assistant but was unable to work or even walk very far as her hips were badly damaged by Sickle Cell Disease. There was no suitable option for surgery in Mwanza and I offered to replace her hips for free, here in Norwich.

“The Norfolk and Norwich Hospital agreed to allow me to carry out her surgery as a privately-funded patient and some of our wonderful theatre nurses, and two of my consultant colleagues, offered to work for free to help me.”

An appeal online and via the cathedral raised £7500 to help towards the operation costs and you can donate here or contact John at

Read our previous story on this topic.

Pictured above are surgeon John Nolan and Adelaida together in Norwich and the surgical team at the Norfolk & Norwich Hospital who performed the operation.