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‘Institute Performs 5,000 Cataract Surgeries Yearly’

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The Eleta Eye Institute says that it performs not fewer than 5000 cataract surgeries every year.
The institute’s Group Managing Director, Dr Benedictus Ajayi, disclosed this on the sidelines of the formal opening of the SKT-ALCON PHACO Training Institute and Ultramodern Cataract Surgery Suit and Lasers on Tuesday in Ibadan.
Ajayi, a consultant opthalmologist, said that cataract  remains a leading cause of preventable blindness and visual impairment  in people of all ages in the country.
He said that the newly equipped training institute would help address the problem of medical tourism and contribute toward the goal of tackling and preventing cataract blindness in the country.
According to him, the ultramodern cataract surgery suite and lasers will provide the phacoemulsification “phaco” and laser-assisted cataract surgery  which is currently the most common type of cataract procedure performed in developed countries.
The opthalmologist said that the laser-assisted catract surgery would offer a higher level of precision for certain steps in a cataract procedure.
“I get emotional every time I see a blind or visually impaired person.
“However, with cutting edge technological innovation, the reversal of cataract blindness is getting easier and easier.
“Today, we are gathered here to present to Nigerians one of the newest technologies in cataract surgery.
“Herein lies a complete surgical suite  with a phaco-machine and operating microscope equipped with artificial intelligence.
“This is Phase One and within the next few months, Eleta will aquire a Vitreeo-Retinal equipment, which costs about 250000 dollars to increase its reach in eye surgery.
“Once this has been acquired and installed, Nigerians would no longer need to travel outside the country for any type of eye surgery because eye care destination tourism will be here in Ibadan,” he said.
The opthalmologist said that Eleta Eye Institute had trained over 100 ophthalmologists  since its inception to address the shortage of skilled manpower in eye care and increase access to quality eye care and timely intervention.
According to him, a lot of people suffer from visual impairment and go blind due to low access to quality eye care and about half of cataract procedures  are performed by herbalists.
“As an institute we exist to provide excellence of service to the rich and the poor.
“One per cent of adults of over the age of 40 are visually impaired as a result of cataracts and most cataract surgeries are performed by quacks.
“Eleta Eye Institute is foremost in providing  surgical skill and training as well as hands-on experience to our residents.
“We are set to go higher by training Nigerian doctors in highly skilled phaco surgery and we are grateful to SKT-Alcon for their partnership and support,” he said.
The Managing Director of SKT Pharmaceutical, Dr Dung Nuhu,  said that the  phaco procedure commonly known as a Drive-in Drive Out (DIDO) surgery is performed within 90 minutes without overnight hospital stays.
Nuhu said that the modern cataract procedure usually helps restore vision lost to cataracts and reduce  dependence on eyeglasses after surgery.
“In 2010, 12 million Nigerians had cataracts and the National Eye Institute  has projected that the number is likely to grow to 30.2 million bu the year 2059.
“Thankfully, phaco cataract surgery is one of the safest and most effective surgical procedures for tackling the scourge of catracts.
“Many cataract surgeries in Nigeria still involve the use of over 2000-year-old traditional method called couching most often with poor results.
“Other conventional surgical techniques for cataract removal though result in good visual outcomes may require a patient to be on admission for up to three weeks.
“The phaco procedure is called the drive in drive out procedure because it promotes faster healing, reduces risk of postoperative astigmatism and complications like retinal detachment.
“An uncomplicated phaco surgery lasts only about 15 minutes for experienced surgeons while the extra minutes is for preoperative and postoperative medications and evaluation.
“Most patients find it easy to resume their usual activities within two to three days of surgery including TV watching, reading, driving and resuming official duties,.
“This is why we are here today to commission one of the world’s best cataract surgery machine with state-of-the-art theatre facilities, “ he said.
Dr Ayobade Ogundipe, the President, Opthalmological Society of Nigeria, said that 95 per cent of cataract surgery is highly successful with favourable outcomes.
Ogundipe, a consultant opthalmologist at the University College Hospital, Ibadan, said that fear of surgery and hospitals, high cost of surgery, low level of awareness and poor access to quality eye care were major factors for low cataract surgery demand in the country.
He advised people to seek the help of an opthalmologist immediately cataract was noticed to prevent permanent blindness and loss of vision.

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Immunization: RSG To Sanction Healthcare Providers For Demanding Money

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Any Healthcare worker under the employment of the Rivers State Government who demands for money before administering meningitis A Vaccines will be punished.
The Permanent Secretary, Rivers State Primary Healthcare Management Board, Dr Agiriye Monima Harry stated this recently during a media parley on the introduction of Meningitis A Vaccines popularly called “Men A” in Port Harcourt.
Dr Harry, who was represented by the Director, Community Health Services of the Board, Dr Isaac Opurum, stated that this measure is to ensure that Health workers do not exploit parents who bring their children to health facilities to be immunised.
While calling on parents to avail themselves of the opportunity by ensuring that their children within the age of 9 to 15 months are immunised, he emphasized that the immunisation is free and safe.
All they (parents) need to do is to take their children to the nearest government-owned health facility and get their children immunised against Men A.
“Any health worker found to be collecting money before administering Men A will be dealth with seriously”, he said.
The on-going Men A immunisation, which started last Monday is a federal government immunization programme which was introduced into the routine immunisation programme in the country.
Speaking in a post-media parley interview, the state immunisation officer, Dr Inwon Joseph Urang stated that meningitis is a disease that affects the covering of the brain and spinal cord, resulting in a inflammation of the covering of the brain and spinal cord.
He stated that in children, meningitis starts like a fever, then the child will develop poor feeding ability and a feeling of sickness.
“Children will be irritable, cry uncontrollably and also develop a bulging forehead which would later develop an opening”.
“For adults, they would develop stiffness in the neck.
According to Dr Urang the causes of meningitis include virus, fungi or bacteria, but that Men A is targeted at the bacteria that causes meningitis.
He stated further that meningitis is a respiratory disease and can be easily transmitted through droplets from sneezing, coughing and other forms of droplets, adding that the risk factors meningitis is overcrowding and inhaling of dust containing the droplets, especially during the dry season.
In order to prevent the disease, according to Dr Urang, there is the need to avoid poorly ventilated environments, regular watching of hands and general cleanliness.

 

Sogbeba Dokubo

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FG Approves Lab Evaluation Of HIV With Rapid Test Kits

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The Federal Ministry of Health on Monday approved the conduct of laboratory evaluation of insti HIV 1/2, and insti Multiplex Dual HIV 1/2, both HIV test kits, and Syphilis antibody rapid test kits.
The National Coordinator, National AIDS, Sexually Transmitted Infections (STI) and Hepatitis Control Programme (NASCP) Dr Araoye Segilola, said this at the dissemination of the antibody rapid test kits in Abuja.
According to him, the result of the evaluation shows that insti HIV 1/2 has specificity and sensitivity of 99.7 per cent.
Segilola, said that Insti multiplex HIV 1/2 syphilis antibody on its part had sensitivity and specificity of 100 per cent.
He said that the test kit was therefore, recommended as a first line kit in the National HIV testing algorithm.
He said that Nigeria did an evaluation of HIV rapid test kits using the World Health Organisation (WHO) guidelines and got appropriate evaluation of HIV Testing Techniques in Africa, where three phases of evaluation were recommended.
“These phases are: phase, I Laborary based, phase II, Field based and phase III, continuous monitoring of the algorithm performance.
“National HIV testing algorithms were developed from these rounds of evaluation conducted and all the test kits are antibody based kits,” he said.
He disclosed that more than 1.9 million Nigerians were infected with HIV with about 1.1 million on Anti-retroviral Therapy (ART).

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Medicinal Uses Of Lemon Grass

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Lemon grass also known as “cymbopogon citrates” is a local herb commonly grown in many homes and gardens in Nigeria. It has a unique aroma that makes it a detectable to have around the neighbounhood.
It’s claimed that lemon grass is a native of India, and other tropical regions in Asia. In parts of India it’s used for soups and makes a delicious fasted in meals with its citrus aroma.
Apart from the culinary uses of lemon grass, it has great medicinal virtues. It’s used in teas, curries and beverages to revitalize the body.
One quality that imbues lemon grass with healing properties is because it has lots of essential nutrients such as vitamin A, vitamin B, vitamin B2, foliate and vitamin C.
It also has lots of essential minerals including calcium, magnesium, potassium, phospharous, manganese, copper, zinc and iron.
It has been confirmed that lemon grass has therapeutic properties, drinking a cup of lemon grass tea can uplift the spirit and refresh the body. In other words, the herb has anti depression properties.
Not only that, the consumption of lemon grass in moderate will help to promote the body health as it helps to reduce high cholesterol. We know bad cholesterol is harmful and can give the body stress. High cholesterol can lead to heart disease including stroke and heart attack.
That said lemon grass help lower blood pressure. The herb contains potassium, so with regular consumption of a tea or soup made from lemon grass, one may not suffer the fear of high blood pressure.
Lemon grass is good for the digestive system, as it has huge contiseptic properties. These constituents have a role in killing the bad bacteria, parasites and other pathogens in the digestive system.
With a good effect in the digestive system, the herb can help reduce constipation, diarrhea, bloating, indigestion and vomiting.
Lemon grass is one of the healthy herbal plants that has analgesic properties which is valuable to deal with pain, and discomfort.
At this point, lemon grass is responsible for treating headache and migraines.
Also, other benefits of reducing pain are in improving the blood circulations that it help to relieve the muscle cramps, spasms, and back aches.
The grass further helps in building a strong immune system. We all need a strong body to fight diseases, and lemon grass is very effective.
Consequently, lemon grass has nutrients that promote a good immune system, as it promotes the work of digestion, respiration and also the nervous system with a good consumption of lemon grass, the body inhibits the presence of bacteria and viruses.
Finally, the herb has the effect to control fever. The way it cures fever is by inducing sweating when consumed hot. It deals with coughs, cold and flu. The grass is packed with lots of vitamin C, so that it protects the body with strong immune system against infection. Always make lemon grass your regular beverage.

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