Life-saving pinhole surgery targeted by West Herts Hospitals’ charity

West Hertfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust runs three hospitals: Watford General Hospital, Hemel Hempstead Hospital and St Albans City Hospital

By Reporter
Friday, 11th February 2022, 12:53 pm
Updated Friday, 11th February 2022, 12:54 pm

A hi-tech scanner could soon be heading to West Hertfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust, thanks to the ‘Imagine This…’ appeal by the trust's charity Raise.

The scanner would allow patients in west Hertfordshire to have cutting edge pinhole surgery provided locally in a new surgical suite.

Officially called ‘Interventional Radiology’, the benefits of image-guided pinhole surgery mean clinical teams will be able to treat patients they currently cannot, including pregnant women, children and those with more complex conditions.

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The scanner would allow patients in west Hertfordshire to have cutting edge pinhole surgery provided locally in a new surgical suite

Compared with traditional open surgery there are many benefits; treatments can be performed under local rather than general anaesthetic, there is a lower risk of bleeding and post-operative infection, and mortality rates are greatly reduced.

Interventional Radiology, also known as image-guided therapy, enables doctors to use real-time imaging techniques, including MRIs, CT scans and ultrasound, to help guide them as they perform minimally invasive surgery, often through a hole the size of a large needle.

Raise - the charity that supports West Hertfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust - has launched the ‘Imagine This... ’appeal as the new Interventional Radiology Suite will be transformative; it will mean that hundreds more patients will be treated nearer their homes and loved ones.

Sofia Sheikh, the charity’s director, said: "It’s wonderful to think that we can harness human kindness to move to this fabulous new way of treating patients, including children who need chemotherapy and dangerously ill patients.

"We are proud to support West Hertfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust in its quest to provide leading edge care for local people."

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Diagnostic and Interventional Radiology Consultant, Dr Muhammad Zamir, who leads the Interventional Radiology team, said: "With the new scanner we will be able to take live images and scans while the patient is on the operating table.

"The images will be detailed enough that we can target treatment directly where it’s needed, for example we can direct chemotherapy straight to the tumour.

"Interventional Radiology has multiple advanced clinical uses for example, destruction of potentially fatal blood clots.

"It can also stop severe, life-threatening bleeding following trauma and childbirth."

The £695,000 appeal has got off to a great start already with the pledge of £100,000 from The League of Friends of Watford Hospital.

A range of fundraising events and opportunities will be on offer for anyone who wants to help buy the scanner that will transform pinhole surgery and save lives.

For more details, or to make a donation visit: raisewestherts.org.uk.