A 37-year-old woman who was diagnosed with brain tumour can now afford a smile after doctors and medical practitioners at Kamuzu Central Hospital (KCH) have this week performed their first ever surgical operation on her since the hospital opened its doors in the 1970s.
The complex procedure of removing a brain tumour was performed after the woman explained a long history of severe headache which was not responding to medications and was associated with progressive loss of vision.
According to reports, well-wishers sponsored the woman to undergo a Computed Tomography (CT) scan of the brain at a private facility where the Brain Tumour described as a craniopharyngioma was diagnosed.
As a response to the problem surgery was planned and executed by neurosurgeon Dr. Ken-Keller Kumwenda with support from a team of local doctors, nurses and anesthetists.
Speaking in an interview with Nyasa Times, Dr. Ken-Keller Kumwenda said the Tumour was located deep at a critical area of the brain but was successfully removed during the delicate operation which took approximately five hours.
“Brain tumours may cause effects that have an impact on your quality of life. They can affect different parts of the brain which control different functions. This means that the effects of a brain tumour you may experience depends on the location, its size and its aggressiveness,” he said
According to Kumwenda, the patient has since embarked on a path of recovery which has so far been smooth.
He further indicated that it is pathetic that there are many patients who suffer from such conditions of the brain but many of them go undiagnosed something which puts one’s life at risk.
Kamuzu Central hospital Director Dr. Jonathan Ngoma said he was very excited with the in house operation saying in the past patients were being referred to Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital in Blantyre and even outside the country for treatment.
“Due to scarcity of resources such as imaging equipment and qualified medical personnel. Most of these patients have been sent abroad and more recently to Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital in Blantyre for treatment but now we are happy that people will be treated here,” he said
Ngoma also bemoaned lack of more qualified neurosurgeons and equipment like CT scan which at the moment the hospital doesn’t have.
“Malawi has only two practicing neurosurgeons for a population of over 16 million people, this is against the WHO recommended ratio of 1 neurosurgeon to 100,000 population, therefore we need to have more neurosurgeons,” he said.
He added: “We are currently mobilizing resources from our partners in Norway and also from within, we really need to have all the necessary equipment so that Dr. Kumwenda can perform his duties without difficulties”.
Ngoma said among other things Brain tumour causes sight problems, Depression, fatigue, communication difficulties and Memory difficulties.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :