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November 23, 2020

 

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Natálka’s final operation is over, she is sitting up and playing

Vítkov, 30.10.2009 17:21, (ROMEA)

This past April in the town of Vítkov, racist fanatics caused burns to 80 % of little Natálka’s body in an arson attack. Yesterday she made it through her final skin graft operation. Michal Kadlčík, representing the hospital’s head physician, told Czech Television that the operation replaced the final 7 % of the girl’s skin. During the past six months, surgeons have been replacing Natálka’s burned skin, first with artificial skin and then by gradually grafting on real skin taken from the parts of her body that were spared injury.

For the time being, Natálka will remain in the intensive care unit. Her mother, Anna Siváková, welcomes the improvement in her state of health. “She is already sitting up and playing. She is even starting to eat normally, she just had lunch,” Siváková told Romea.cz. Natálka will most probably undergo future operations on her joints and limbs.

After the initial shock and fear following the attack, Anna Siváková believed Natálka would survive. “I believed she would manage to recover – I raised her, so I know what she is like, she is really strong,” Siváková told Romea.cz in a recent interview.

Siváková also hopes that thanks to the doctors’ successful operations, the family will gradually be able to change the way they have been forced to live ever since the Molotov cocktail attack. “Everything is completely upside down for me now. I have no time for the other children or for myself. I get up in the morning, make breakfast, get dressed, go to the train, visit Natálka, and return late at night. That is what I do, day after day, almost every single day,” Siváková said. “I know that with Natálka this situation will be different, because she was exceptional even before the attack… She was always ahead of other children her age … already walking by the age of one. Before the attack, she was speaking beautifully, clearly, no stammering or mumbling, she knew how to name everything correctly and pronounce everything, she went potty by herself, she ate by herself, she was drinking tea and juice – she was very independent.”

Yesterday, Siváková’s other three daughters watched a Czech Television broadcast about their two-year-old sister. “It was the first time they’d seen her since the arson attack, on the screen, and it affected them deeply. Today they‘re doing a little better,” Siváková said.

Natálka’s parents are looking forward to bringing her home to the new house they are currently renovating. Siváková told Romea.cz that the repairs are making rapid progress. All that remains to be finished is the exterior plaster, the bathroom, and repairs to the storage spaces and woodshed before everything can be painted. “We had to completely re-plaster the walls inside and replace the electricity and plumbing. The pipes and cables are already in place, Pavel is going to embed them in concrete today,” Siváková said.

František Kostlán, Gwendolyn Albert, František Kostlán, translated by Gwendolyn Albert
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