By Sola Ogundipe
Small incision procedures such as hysteroscopy have been identified as the future of gynaecology in Nigeria and the world at large.
Associate Professor, Obstetrics & Gynecology, Harvard Medical School and Director of Minimally invasive Gynaecologic Surgery, Newton Wellesley Hospital, in theÂ USA, Dr. Keith Isaacson, told Good Health Weekly that small incision procedures are useful because the patient can go home the same day it is performed.
â€œPatients need to be aware that hysteroscopy is a valuable tool for making the diagnosis of the cause of their abnormal uterine bleeding, so there is need for understanding of the procedure itself. With minimal access surgery, the uterine cavity can be visualized and they can go about their daily activities after that.â€
Recalling that most of the potential advantages stem from the reduced trauma relative to conventional surgery and reduced hospital stays, IsaacsonÂ observed there are several benefits but the challenge is getting doctors who have been trained on it.
â€œThe procedure is complex, not inexpensive and part of the challenge all over the world is acquiring the equipment to provide the service to patients. But it is a better procedure for the woman and the physician,â€ he summed up.
Isaacson spoke in Lagos recently during a training workshop put together by Nordica Fertility Center,Â Lagosto update knowledge of Consultants and Residents in gynaecology, as well as senior medical officers, fertility specialists, and all doctors involved in the care of women, women with infertilityÂ and women with abdominal uterine bleeding, with the knowledge of the practicalities and technical aspects of setting up and running a basic investigative and therapeutic hysteroscopy service.
â€œThe whole idea is about capacity building within the medical profession,â€ noted Dr. Abayomi Ajayi, MD. Nordica Fertility Center,Â Lagos. â€œIn some countries, hysteroscopy is done as an office procedure.Â However, we continue to see the importance of this procedure in our own practice and we know it is going to be important to the gynaecologists.â€
Ajayi opined that ayone who wants to practice in the medical field in the country within the next decade woule have no option other than to embrace newer technology. â€œIt is going to get to a time that even the patient will be so aware as to have choice of options.
We should be going forward and one way of achieving that is by bringing home this newer technology. By bringing doctors who are used to these procedures from the UK and the USA, we can help impact this knowledge on our doctors.â€™
Identifying the main problem as awareness, Ajayi noted that cost is a secondary issue. â€œNowhere in the world is IVF cheap. You need to know about it first, so we need to ensure people are aware. Infertility is a personal problem and must be treated as such.â€