Dozens Turn up as Mulago Launches Interventional Radiology Services

45 year old Frank Kasaija fell as he went grazing about four years ago in the rural Ntoroko district.

Since then he has been in and out of hospitals due to excruciating pain in the upper part of his abdomen. A scan done at Fort Portal Regional Referral later found he had an abscess in the liver, and a surgery for such would go for not less than twenty million shillings.

This meant a death sentence for a subsistence farmer.

Kasaija would only be relieved this afternoon after Mulago National Referral Hospital started offering their first interventional radiology services as part of their efforts to upscale specialized care.

According to Dr Eva Nabawanuka, an interventional radiologist at the hospital, a surgery is unnecessary for Kasaija with the newly launched treatment approach.  All they needed is access the liver using special needles and carefully dissolve the mass.

While typically radiology is used as a diagnosis tool to test patients and refer them for necessary treatment, interventional radiology involves treating a wide range of conditions in the body by inserting various small tools, such as catheters or wires from outside the body while using X-ray and imaging techniques such as CT and ultrasound to guide.

At least 23 patients will be attended to every day for for the rest of this week as the hospital offers subsidized services to those with cancer of the intestines in addition to those with kidney problems requiring draining urine in a procedure technically referred to as nephrostomy.

Dr Rosemary Byanyima the Ag. Executive Director of the hospital says this service will be up scaled even more when other specialists still training join the team of three that the hospital currently has.

She says previously people needing this kind of service have had to be referred abroad for treatment.

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