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Agony leads to joy of walking tall

Updated: 2015-03-19 08:04
By SUN LI/HU MEIDONG (China Daily)

Agony leads to joy of walking tall

The deformity made Chen's legs below her knees bend backward, and she was unable to walk normally. CHINA DAILY

Several companies in Xiamen donated 200,000 yuan ($32,500) to help cover the medical bills.

Chen said she never expected she would one day walk like other people. When the opportunity finally came, she told the people who gave her a send-off at the airport that she would "walk back home".

Chen Ing-ho, the doctor in charge of her operations at Hualien Tzu Chi Hospital, was taken aback by her rare condition. He consulted with other medical experts at the hospital and looked at similar cases throughout the world before deciding on the best form of treatment.

The treatment lasted more than 10 months and involved seven operations. After the surgery, her height increased from 92 cm to 122 cm.

A volunteer from the foundation said Chen Tuanzhi showed admirable fortitude and an optimistic attitude throughout the treatment.

"Chen always smiled at others and never complained about the pain caused by the surgeries," the volunteer said, adding that Chen had to endure several operations involving painful bone-cutting.

Chen's doctor said she was still in agony during the rehabilitation stage, as she went through the process of strengthening the muscles in her legs.

"No matter how much it hurt, Chen would never quit exercising," the doctor said.

Chen said she behaved bravely because she thought the more pain she could endure, the more quickly she could "walk back home".

Walking with the assistance of just one crutch, Chen is now eager to make a contribution to society.

"I received lots of care and love," she said. "I'm very grateful to those who helped and accompanied me. I hope to recover further and keep spreading positive energy."

Peng Juan contributed to this story.

Contact the writers at sunli@chinadaily.com.cn

Quick bio

Name: Chen Tuanzhi

Age: 26

Hometown: Xiamen, Fujian


Hobby: Reading


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