Malamulela refused to be amputated
MBABANE – The late senator Chief Malamulela Magagula refused to have his leg amputated when doctors suggested that alternative to his then worsening diabetic condition.
The chief elected to use a combination of traditional herbs and western treatment methods which he said worked for him.
He bought these traditional herbs (timbita) in Ermelo, South Africa where he said a container cost anything from E50 to E100, depending on how much one wanted.
He said this during an interview with this publication in May last year.
The newspaper had visited to check on him after he had been out of work for over four months while recuperating from diabetes.
Magagula died five weeks ago at the age of 71.
Diabetes is a chronic disease which occurs when the body does not create enough insulin, a substance in the body which controls how sugar influences the body.
Doctors wanted the chief’s right leg to be amputated but he flatly refused.
In the interview, he told the Times SUNDAY that the reason he refused to be amputated was that he felt he had to exhaust all other forms of treatment before that could happen.
The doctors had called for the amputation after it appeared that Magagula’s diabetic condition had reached an advanced stage.
Amputation usually becomes an inevitable option when the disease has reached an advanced stage and there are complications that involve nerves of the foot.
This results in lessened blood circulation and even foot ulcers among other things.
It is a necessary step to avoid infection spreading to other body parts.
Simon Magagula, the chief’s uncle, said as a family, they believed the chief’s death was as result of diabetes.
He said they believed that Malamlela’s pancreas (inso) was no longer functioning well to control the blood sugar level.
The pancreas is a small organ, approximately six inches long, located in the upper abdomen, and adjacent to the small intestine. It is so deep within your body; doctors have difficulty diagnosing the disease.
Its functions are to complete the job of breaking down protein, carbohydrates, and fats using digestive juices of pancreas combined with juices from the intestines.
It also secretes hormones that affect the level of sugar in the blood. Again, it produces chemicals that neutralise stomach acids that pass from the stomach into the small intestine by using substances in pancreatic juice.
"We are aware that the chief had refused to be amputated because he had chosen other remedies to treat his ailment.
"We got to know these from the reports published by newspapers," he said.
"We had learnt though that the remedies he took seemed to be working because his swollen foot subsided and almost became normal. He was even able to walk even though he never put on shoes," he said.
Simon said there was a 50/50 chance that the chief’s diabetic condition could have worsened even if he had accepted amputation.
"It was possible that even after amputation, the condition would have worsened. We believe that only God controls one’s life," he said.
He said the chief had been using the Dvokolwako Clinic and another in Manzini.
Simon further explained that they would neither dispute nor accept reports that the chief’s death was a result of his refusal to have his leg amputated.
"We can only accept that if the doctors who had been examining him provide such a report. For now, we will not agree with such news because to us they are nothing but rumors. Anything is possible here," he said.
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