Hernia patients to benefit from new free surgery technique during 5-day camp

Mombasa Health CEC Hazel Koitaba (second from right) together with doctors who will be carrying out the surgeries at Coast General hospital. PHOTO: MAKOKHA HILLARY.

Mombasa, KENYA: About sixty hernia patients at Coast general hospital will benefit from a five-day hernia camp launched in Mombasa on Tuesday.

The camp targets to reduce the number of hernia patients at coastal Kenya and it involves the use of new techniques.

Addressing journalists on Wednesday, Coast General hospital chief administrator Kadwola Iqbal said both local and international doctors will carry out sixty hernia surgeries using the new technique known as mesh surgery.

The surgery involves the use of a Surgical mesh, which is a medical device that is used to provide additional support to weakened or damaged tissue; a majority of surgical mesh devices currently available for use are constructed from synthetic materials or animal tissue.

According to Kadwola the advantage of the mesh is that it allows the tension created by the repair to be spread across the abdominal wall, which in turn allows the patient to have normal movement after surgery.

Doctors involved in the camp are from Canada and South Africa and are expected to teach local doctors on the mesh surgery technique.

Hernia occurs when an organ pushes through an opening in the muscle or tissue that holds it in place. For instance, the intestines may break through a weakened area in the abdominal wall.

They are most common in the abdomen, but can also appear in the upper thigh, belly button, and groin areas.

Mombasa County health secretary Hazel Koitaba said that the doctors have so far carried out 24 successful surgeries after the camp was launched on Tuesday.

According to coast general hospital consultant surgeon Heltan Maganga, about 1,200 cases are reported annually at the hospital and it involves both children and adults.

“In this hospital, we see many hernia patients it involves both children and adults and it has got many causes, so every year we hold one or two camps to reduce the backlog and also try to give an opportunity to train new surgeons,” said Maganga.

He said the new technique is cost effective and it will only take a day or two for a patient to recover.