Vietnam conquers pinnacle medical techniques

Thursday, 2020-01-16 15:42:05
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NDO – In recent years, the Vietnamese health sector has witnessed multiple breakthroughs in the application of state-of-art techniques to improve the quality of healthcare for people throughout the country. 2019 was also a year witnessing many "first time ever" miracles of Vietnamese medicine.

First time to perform two organ transplants at the same time

After the successful achievements in lung transplants, in 2019, the Hanoi-based Viet Duc (Vietnam - Germany) Friendship Hospital conquered a simultaneous transplant of a liver and kidney for a Lao patient with final-stage liver and kidney failure, with both liver and kidney collected from a deceased donor.

Based on practical experience through 840 kidney and 74 liver transplants, on December 17, 2019, with the participation of nearly 100 experts in the field of organ transplants, the hospital successful performed the operation. The transplanted liver and kidneys are now successfully operating normally.

Liver-kidney simultaneous transplantations are a difficult technique in organ transplantations, requiring sufficient experience in both liver and kidney transplants. The replacement of the two organs will also extend the time for surgery, with the use of more complex techniques and they require smooth coordination among surgical teams.

For the first time, Vietnamese doctors 3D-printed an artificial thigh bone

Thanks to the development and application of 3D printing together with the inheritance of achievements in biomedical replacement material technology, especially with the advent of technology using polyether ether ketone (PEEK) material in shaping artificial bones, a team of doctors from St. Paul General Hospital, Hanoi Medical University Hospital and K Hospital have found a new direction for thorough treatment for patients with complex bone tumour disease.

The use of PEEK - a new polymer material used in orthopaedics - has brought about appropriate properties to create biological materials implanted into the human body, such as resilience, elasticity, high biological compatibility and can easily be manipulated into 3D printed moulds. The Vietnamese doctors created an artificial thigh bone identical to the patient's bone, and is perfectly designed to fit the transplant process.

In order to connect the artificial bone and the patient's remaining bone, doctors used a special titanium artificial joint system specifically designed to fit the structure of the artificial bone, helping two parts of the transplanted bone closely link, thus ensuring the capacity and force transmission.

This technique, in the past year, was successfully performed on the first two cases of thigh bone transplants by the Department of Orthopaedic Trauma and Sports Medicine under the St. Paul General Hospital in Hanoi. It is the first time Vietnamese doctors have used 3D printed PEEK material to make a nearly 20 cm long thigh bone to replace the upper part on the thighs of two male patients who had previously been deformed by bone tumours.

For the first time, Vietnam has intervened in the womb’s foetus

With the desire to create more opportunities to save new-born’s right from the womb, the Hanoi Obstetrics and Gynaecology Hospital has carried out the foetal intervention technique (putting instruments in the amniotic fluid for intervention then waiting as the pregnancy continues). This is not only a step forward for obstetrics and gynaecology in the hospital and the whole sector but also has a deep and profound relevance.

Up until now, the Hanoi Obstetrics and Gynaecology Hospital has successfully intervened for 15 women suffering from twin-to-twin transfusion syndrome (TTTS). In particular, healthy babies were born in two cases of TTTS that have been actively intervened by doctors at the hospital in last December.

The two babies who received the foetus intervention were delivered successfully and healthily on December 28, 2019.

In Vietnam, previously, women with foetal pathologies had to accept the foetus would die or the babies would be born with disabilities. However, with the concept that the foetus is also a patient and must be treated when there is a pathological problem, the Hanoi Obstetrics and Gynaecology Hospital has proposed the Ministry of Science and Technology to approve a State-level scientific research project on researching and application of interventional molecular biology techniques in the amniotic fluid to increase the chances of being saved and treated for the foetus right from the womb.

For the first time, artificial intelligence has been used in stroke diagnosis and treatment

Ho Chi Minh City-based People's Hospital 115 and Gia An 115 Hospital are the first units in Vietnam has coordinated in the installation and deployment of RAPID - an artificial intelligence application software developed by Stanford University, USA - in diagnosing and providing new treatment in acute brain strokes. Vietnam is the third country after Thailand and Indonesia that brought the copyright for the software.

According to medical experts, every minute, there will be about 1.9 million brain cells that will continue to be necrotic during stroke. In contrast, if blood vessels are re-opened during this time, the brain cells in the "twilight zone" will be able to recover quickly. Therefore, the software helps to determine the volume of necrotic core area and of brain parenchyma that is at risk of injury and necrosis in the following hours, helping doctors to diagnose and intervene with more precise treatment.

This "twilight zone" cannot be seen through conventional images but the RAPID software has been proven as an effective solution through clinical trials and has obtained approval from the US Food and Drug Administration for use at leading stroke care centres in the US. To date, more than 1,200 centres use RAPID software worldwide.

For the first time, Vietnam has mastered awakening neurosurgical technique

January 28, 2019 is a special day for the Vietnamese health sector as for the first time, Hanoi’s Vietnam - Germany Friendship Hospital marked a new miracle in the field of neurosurgery when it successfully performed the first awake brain surgery in the country. It was performed on patient with a brain tumour under the assistance of two Japanese experts. This method has been applied for a long time by developed countries around the world, but it is the first time Vietnam has implemented this technique.

During the awake operation, the surgical staff were able to know which area was the patient's sensitive zone through communication to avoid invading functional areas that may cause injuries.

In particular, the awake surgery helps minimise the sequelae for patients during surgery, such as paralysis, movement dysfunction and language disorders. After the surgery, the patient were fully alert and discharged from hospital after roughly one week. It is worth noting that the surgical cost is not higher than the traditional method.

For the first time, a provincial hospital has successfully carried out non-related kidney transplant

The Phu Tho Provincial General Hospital has successfully performed multiple kidney transplants, including both related and non-related transplants. However, April 3, 2019 marked a big turning point when, for the first time ever, doctors at the hospital performed a kidney transplant whose recipient and donor were not biological related and also had incompatible blood types.

The kidney transplant saw the participation of a team of experienced doctors from Phu Tho General Hospital and Hanoi’s Viet Duc Friendship Hospital. The surgery took place smoothly over roughly three hours with the patient’s kidney functions become reactivated successfully on the operating table.