A MIDDELBURG man was rushed into surgery at Livingstone Hospital last night as three surgeons tried to devise a plan to remove a large knife lodged in his chest in a bizarre accident.
Zolile Mzinyane, 39, spent most of yesterday with the blade buried deep in his chest.
The knife was pushed in up to the hilt.
The doctor who saw him first refused to remove the knife in case he bled out.
Mzinyane was stabbed in a bizarre incident at his family home in the small Karoo town.
A metro ambulance paramedic, who did not want to be named, described it as a freak accident.
“He had tried to lock himself in his bedroom,” the paramedic said. “He was holding a knife and a family member pushed the door open.
“The door hit the knife which was then pushed into his chest.”
Mzinyane was taken to the Wilhelm Stahl Hospital in Middelburg, where he was treated by Dr Elviro Padda.
“He was not bleeding. If I removed the knife he would have bled out,” Padda said.
“It would have been a disaster.”
Mzinyane was quickly stabilised and then transferred to the Cradock police station, which has a helipad.
At about midday, the Eastern Cape Department of Health’s helicopter and advanced life support paramedic Ashwell Botha were sent to Cradock for an emergency hospital transfer.
Nelson Mandela Bay EMS head Brenhan Metune said Mzinyane had a large knife embedded in the lower part of his chest.
“The patient could still move,” he said. The helicopter landed at about 3.30pm at the EMS building in Lindsay Street, Port Elizabeth, and Mzinyane was rushed across the street to the Accident and Emergency Unit.
Metune said when they handed Mzinyane over to doctors at Livingstone Hospital his condition was stable.
This was confirmed by Eastern Cape Health Department spokesman Siyanda Manana, who said last night that Mzinyane’s condition was still stable.
He said that, according to hospital chief executive Thulane Madonsela, the doctors needed to know exactly where the knife was lodged before removing it.
Mzinyane was being prepared for surgery last night.
“We have three surgeons that will be doing exploratory surgery to see where exactly the knife got stuck and what the extent of the damage to his organs is,” Manana said.
Afterwards, the surgeons would decide how to proceed further.