New spine surgery technique at HMC
LANI ROSE R DIZON
DOHA THE orthopaedic department at the Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC) has introduced an innovative spine surgery technique to treat patients suffering from osteoporotic vertebral fracture through a minimally invasive surgery called kyphoplasty.
A team of doctors led by Dr Abdul Moeen Baco — a senior consultant spinal surgeon at the HMC — successfully performed the said procedure on a male patient in his late 60s on January 28.
The complex operation on the patient, who sustained a T12 fracture from a road accident, was the first of its kind in the country. The patient was admitted to the HMC in severe pain and was referred to the spinal unit where he underwent kyphoplasty — a procedure which was completed in 60 minutes. The patient was discharged within a few days and was able to walk upright without any support.
Addressing the mediapersons on Tuesday, Dr Mohammed M al Ateeq al Dosari, acting head of orthosurgery at the HMC said, “This is a new technology introduced into our healthcare system.
It’s an innovative way of conducting spine surgery. It will benefit the creation of the spine centre of excellence. The spine centre of excellence is a department we are committed to, and the HMC considers it a priority in improving the next generation of orthopaedic care in the country.” Speaking about the new procedure, Dr Baco said that kyphoplasty was first introduced more than five years ago, but has been adopted as a routine practice by most doctors only in the last three years. The procedure is now popular in several Western countries.
According to the procedure, a balloon is inserted through the trocar, into the fractured vertebra where it is inflated to create a cavity for cement injection. The balloon is removed prior to injecting cement into the cavity.
The cavity is created with the help of the balloon.
“Kyphoplasty provides patients with instant pain relief, early mobilisation, early discharge and a normal life. It saves the patient from endless weeks of bed rest and is a good alternative to the traditional method of putting screws on the fracture which is a four-hour-long exercise,” Dr Baco said.
“The old method involves plenty of bleeding, the risk of anaesthesia and the possibility of infection and further surgery. We don’t put people on the waiting list for this procedure because the sooner we operate on the patients the better. So, we advise the physicians looking after the geriatric patients and emergency team to refer such patients to the HMC’s spinal unit to treat them with this advanced technique which is now available locally,” Dr Balco added.