STROKE patients are still not brought immediately to the Jerudong Park Medical Centre's (JPMC) Neuroscience, Stroke and Rehabilitation Centre (NSRC) for treatment once onset of symptoms are present.
Professor Datin Seri Laila Jasa Dr Uta Meyding-Lamadé, a consultant neurologist at the NSRC said majority of their patients are still being transferred from other hospitals instead of coming directly to the centre.
"Only 25 per cent of thrombolysis patients are coming directly to the NSRC. The remaining 75 per cent are still being referred from other hospitals and that is a bad sign," she told The Brunei Times recently.
Thrombolysis is a drug given to break down blood clots, and is an effective proven treatment if carried out within the first 4.5 hours upon inception of stroke symptoms.
Professor Datin Dr Meyding-Lamadé explained the thrombolytic agent will be able to dissolve clots in the brain if treated only within the first 4.5 hours. "This is one of the real major challenges we have. As soon as you go to another hospital, you lose time."
"Every minute, millions of nerve cells die irreversibly. If you come within the 4.5 hour time window, you can reverse the outcome. It you walk into the specialist hospital, you can prevent up to 80 per cent of the recurrence of another stroke," she stressed.
Some of the acute symptoms of the onset of stroke are right-sided weakness of one's limbs, hanging of the corner of one's mouth, speech disturbance, slurring of speech or vision disturbance, among others.
Coordination deficits, sensibility loss on one side of the body, dizziness and acute onset of vomiting are also suspicions of stroke.
The consultant said they are looking to go to schools and public places to create awareness about stroke treatment at the NSRC.
"By going to schools, children will tell their parents and their grandparents on stroke symptoms, as well as the importance of coming to the NSRC straight away. Also, 15 per cent of stroke patients are below 45 years of age," she said.
Since its establishment two years ago, the NSRC has treated over 1,500 in-and-out patients. The specialist team have established hemicraniatomies, thrombolysis and hypothermia as their routine methods, and Professor Datin Dr Meyding-Lamadé said further attention will be given to Brunei in the near future because "there is nothing like this in the neighbouring countries."
"This (NSRC) is a world class centre already. We will have our second international conference of neurology in November, and this shows there is a great attention to this project in Brunei."
"I think generally, the Bruneian community is now aware of this service provided at the NSRC due to His Majesty's support for its implementation," she said. Rachel ThienThe Brunei Times
Tuesday, July 24, 2012
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