, NAIROBI, Kenya, Dec 7 – Christmas will come early for 15 patients suffering from various spinal ailments and deformities following a collaborative project between the Kenyatta National Hospital (KNH) and the NuVasive Spine Foundation that will see corrective surgeries carried out on the patients.
Patients will only have to part with between Sh20,000 and Sh30,000 depending on the type of procedure carried out on them, instead of the Sh1 million which would have otherwise been required.
In a statement sent to newsrooms on Saturday, KNH Communications Manager Kibet Mengich said that the surgeries will be conducted between December 9 and 15 at the referral hospital.
“The surgeons will carry out corrective surgeries on 15 patients with spine deformities, degenerative, traumatic and infective spine conditions as well as neo-plastic spine ailments,” read the statement.
He added that the procedures would also relieve the shortlisted patients from back pains in addition to improving spine surgery treatment in the country.
Mengich explained that doctors participating in the project would be able to share their knowledge and experience which would further research on spinal injuries.
“The project will offer corrective spine surgery that will correct a wide range of back problems and help affected patients rediscover a pain free life,” he argued.
He also observed that the project would improve the availability of such surgeries in Kenya which would make it available locally and at affordable rates.
“Many patients waiting for orthopaedic care have waited too long in the past and this project will help to address this by contributing to improvements in access for patients by working together with surgeons to develop sustainable spine treatment programs,” he observed.
In August this year, the first paediatric kidney transplants were successfully carried out at KNH giving two girls and two boys aged between the ages of 13 and 17 a new lease of life.
The four transplants were performed on August 26 bringing to total the number of transplants done in the country to 99 after the first transplant was conducted in 1978.
KNH Chief Transplant surgeon Peter Mungai noted that children with kidney diseases were particularly disadvantaged because it was not advisable to place them on dialysis.
This is because of their tiny blood vessels in addition to the fact that they are unable to meet the 20-kilo weight threshold required.
The exchanges between doctors at KNH and their foreign counterparts are expanding the medical know how in Kenya and enabling a few patients who cannot afford to seek treatment abroad, get it locally.