Richard and Benjamin don’t know each other, but within 2 hours both were seriously injured
Thanks to the doctors from “St. George” UMBAL, they will be able to descend again
We are alive, well and happy. We sincerely thank the doctors from the Neurosurgery Clinic at St. George Medical Center who got us back on our feet. With these words, the two English paragliders, injured near Sopot, left the hospital room in Plovdiv to return to their homeland, the health facility reported.
52-year-old Benjamin and 68-year-old Richard came to Bulgaria to go paragliding. The two do not know each other, but during two hours on September 12, they fell and seriously injured themselves.
After a tip-off, the British were put on a Cougar helicopter from the airbase in Krumovo and brought to St. George Medical Center. The hospital team was waiting for the injured outside to take care of them as quickly as possible.
The very next day, they were operated on by the leading neurosurgeon Dr. Borislav Kalnev in a team with Dr. Georgi Bozhilov, who told more about the condition in which they arrived and what intervention was performed.
“Both fell badly, and for one there was a danger to life. Richard had two broken vertebrae and Benjamin one, but his condition was more serious because there was a risk of spinal cord injury. His surgical intervention lasted 3 hours. He was operated on with an imposed stabilization, which will be removed in about a year after a follow-up scan. Richard was suitable for vertebroplasty, which was successful. After the operation, he is fully recovered, without complaints, without difficulties. Now both of them are on their feet, which is the most important thing”, assured Dr. Kalnev.
Early in the morning the older Englishman was discharged. Benjamin remained in the room in a good mood, greeting his doctor with “Hello, Dr. B.”
“I didn’t get scared because there was no time for that. I even felt the pain later. I am happy that I came across these doctors because they are very good. They responded very quickly, which is commendable. Our operations were successful. They did a great job and thanks to that we can go home,” says Benjamin. The man lives with his wife in Hampshire. He has a son and a daughter – 25 and 22 years old.
The Brit has experience with helicopters – he served in the Royal Air Force for 29 years and has been paragliding for 9 years. This is the third time he comes to Bulgaria. “Richard is from Dorset, but we will continue to see each other and fly together, thanks to the medical care in Plovdiv,” said Benjamin.