Injured Palestinian worker gets voice back

Four months after his vocal cords were torn out at a Rehovot construction site, Ali Abu Phar'a can talk again.

man aching throat 88 (photo credit: )
man aching throat 88
(photo credit: )
Four months after a wall at a construction site fell on a 51-year-old Palestinian building worker Ali Abu Phar'a and tore out his vocal cords, he can talk again. He was rushed to Kaplan Medical Center in Rehovot from the building site in Gedera and found to have holes in his lungs, fractures to the cartilage in his throat and breathing problems. Dr. Yonatan Lahav of the ear-nose-and-throat department said Phar'a was put under anesthesia and drains were inserted in the chest to release escaping from his lungs. Put into intensive care, he was ventilated. Without urgent care, he would never be able to speak, or breathe through his nose. As he has no Israeli health insurance, hospital management speeded up approval from the Palestinian Authority to undergo surgery. Lahav and Dr. Moshe Yehuda worked for hours, sewing Abu Phar'a's vocal cords and reattaching him to the cartilage in his throat. The fractures were sit with an internal brace. A few weeks later, the brace was removed and he underwent rehabilitation for breathing through his nose, swallowing and speaking. The patient no longer needs an external air hole in his throat to breathe, and his voice is almost normal, Lahav said.