• The girl was standing outside when a military round exploded onto their house
  • A jagged lump of metal was embedded in her brain for around three weeks
  • The teen was now feeling better after doctors removed the shrapnel

A 13-year-old Ukrainian schoolgirl has finally received surgery to remove a piece of shrapnel that was lodged in her brain after Russian forces attacked her village last month.

The girl, identified only as Sophia, was being treated at the country's top children’s hospital in Kyiv. The attack that critically wounded her took place in her village in southern Ukraine on March 5.

“I was standing next to my mother and heard some explosion,” Sophia, who was sitting in the hospital with her head bandaged, told Sky News in an interview Saturday.

The teenager and her mother, Liudmila, 48, were standing outside at the time when a military round exploded onto their house.

“I ran - only three steps. Then I heard another explosion. And then I lost consciousness,” Sophia told the outlet. "I woke up when my parents took me to the basement of our house. My mum took my legs and my father took my arms. And then I passed out again.”

Liudmila, who was bleeding at the time from a cut next to her left eye, said she did not realize Sophia needed urgent medical attention. She thought her daughter was having a concussion following the attack.

“Only once in the hospital I understood that something was in her head,” the mother said.

At the hospital, the family found out a jagged lump of metal -- the size of a peanut -- had blasted through Sophia’s skull, and gotten itself embedded in her brain.

The local hospital in the nearby city of Mykolaiv was able to stabilize Sophia and insert a tube into her head. However, they did not have the specialized equipment required to remove the piece of shrapnel, according to Euro Weekly News.

Sophia then had to wait three weeks before being taken around 250 miles away to the Ohmatdyt children's hospital in Kyiv. Pavlo Plavskyi, the top pediatric neurosurgeon in the hospital, said it was a miracle Sophia was still alive, and noted the wound would have been fatal if the metal had moved by even a centimeter.

Sophia was wheeled in for surgery Wednesday for a procedure that took an hour and a half.

“I was told that this operation was really serious and difficult," Liudmila told Sky News. "But now I believe that in Ukraine they have the best doctors in the world. And now I believe that doctors' hands are controlled by God. It's a miracle.”

When asked whether he was nervous before the procedure, the surgeon said: “I am a crazy neurosurgeon! I always, just before an operation, imagine how to do it. I imagine what I will do. I make preparations before the operation.”

Sophia said she has started feeling better, and has already made plans of learning to play the guitar when she is finally back home.

"I can also read music," the teenager said. "I dream about a guitar because ours was broken. Dad promised me he'd fix it. That's why I'm dreaming about it. I want to have a black one.”

Representative image Credit: Pixabay / ID 12019