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Last Updated: Thursday, 28 July, 2005, 10:07 GMT 11:07 UK
Iranian child thanks for surgery
Mohammed Reza
Mohammed is to try out the first of his artificial limbs
A child from Iran has been welcomed by the community that raised money to enable him to be flown to Wales for life-changing surgery.

Mohammed Reza, three, lost both hands in an accident over two years ago at a family-owned tin roof press.

It was witnessed by a Llanidloes dentist Simon Sobhani who administered first aid before driving across the country to a hospital in Tehran.

Mr Sobhani has since raised more than 17,000 for the boy's treatment.

Mohammed arrived at London's Queen Mary Hospital on 17 July with his father, Rahim, where an artificial hand was cast.

The father and son are now in Llanidloes, and plan to return to hospital on Monday to have the limb fitted.

Mr Sobhani explained that he realised how difficult life would be for Mohammed without his hands.

"I thought the only way was to actually try to help him with artificial limbs so he could manage on a daily basis," he added.

Simon Sobhani
I knew, without his limbs, that little boy couldn't survive
Simon Sobhani

Mr Sobhani said after being fitted with the artificial limb in London, Mohammed would probably undergo surgery in Iran to "stimulate growth in his elbow".

"We will pay for the operation in Iran, but we're trying to find a hospital at the moment," he added.

"Mohammed will then return to Wales later in the year to have the second artificial limb fitted.

Mr Sobhani said Mohammed and his father were grateful to people in Llanidloes.

It was two-and-a-half years ago, that Mr Sobhani was visiting his parents in Iran when he witnessed the incident in which Mohammed lost his limbs.

"The accident was horrific and I felt so sorry fort he little boy who lost a hand and his other arm below the elbow.

"He was near the machinery which was owned by his parents. He clearly shouldn't have been anywhere near it, but accidents happen and now we have to help Mohammed."

After returning to his patients in mid Wales, he continued his commitment to Mohammed's recovery by holding a series of fundraising events.

Mr Sobhani has raised enough for two years' treatment by specialists and he hopes to raise a further 1,000 to secure a third year.

A lot of the money came via a national raffle among fellow dentists in the UK.

Timeline: Iran
08 May 04 |  Country profiles
Private move hits dental patients
02 Aug 05 |  Cornwall

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