Hospital gets hi-tech foot scanner
Manama, June 28, 2010
Doctors at Bahrain's biggest hospital will be able to prevent scores of limb amputations following the donation of a revolutionary machine.
Officials at Salmaniya Medical Complex (SMC) hope the FotoScan 3D will virtually eliminate the need for patients to undergo such harrowing procedures.
The unique scanning technology delivers precise, colour 3D digital casts of any part of the human body and has a proven track record in a wide range of areas, including custom orthopaedic footwear, orthotics and wound measurement.
Intercol Bahrain made the donation, which cost several thousand dinars, to the SMC vascular centre as part of its contribution to good causes.
SMC vascular consultant and kidney transplant surgeon and centre head Dr Sadiq Abdulla said staff were delighted with the new machine.
'Doctors will now be able to have very correct and precise information of what lies within the human body and that will help prevent limb amputations from taking place,' he said.
Dr Abdulla said the number of major limb amputations (under the knee) due to vascular conditions had already dramatically decreased from 73 in 2003 to around 10 last year thanks to new techniques and diagnostic facilities.
'With the new machine, we hope the diagnosis will be so precise that we will have nearly zero major amputations,' he said.
However, Dr Abdulla said there were still around 50 to 60 minor (toe) amputations per year. 'We hope to cut down on that figure as well by using the advanced technology,' he told our sister newspaper Gulf Daily News (GDN).
He said such cases included people who were forced to have part of their toes, feet or whole legs amputated.
'Diabetics, in particular, should be extra careful of their feet since high glucose levels can damage nerves resulting in abnormal or decreased sensation,' he added.
Dr Abdulla said a procedure to measure pressure in the feet had been introduced which tested those at increased risk of developing such conditions.
He said it was painful to see so many people lose their feet to diabetes and said they should look out for cracks, bleeding in the skin, red streaks or other signs of infection.
'They should examine the inside of their shoes before putting them on and look for small pebbles, torn leather or nail pops which could irritate their skin,' said Dr Abdulla.
He urged anyone with an ulcer, bleeding feet or foul odour to contact a doctor or chiropodist immediately.
Lynn Al Wazzan, wife of Intercol director Abdulrahman Al Wazzan, who lost two of her toes to diabetes, said it was crucial such equipment was available. She said if all hospitals and health centres in Bahrain had foot scanners, cases such as hers would not occur.
'This is the reason this donation has been made,' said Al Wazzan.-TradeArabia News Service