JDWNRH: Diagnostic services at the Jigme Dorji Wangchuck National Referral Hospital are expected to improve with the hospital receiving an ultrasonography and C-arm machines yesterday.

Worth about Nu 4M (million), HRH Princess Kesang Wangmo Wangchuck donated the machines to the hospital, along with an additional Nu 1M cheque for palliative care.

Hospital officials said that about 70-80 patients avail the ultrasonography services every day.  Health minister Tandin Wangchuk, said that, while the country had made impressive progress and achieved successes in primary health care, the health system was also struggling with a plenty of challenges.

Lyonpo said there was an increasing demand for quality care and diagnosis services, with an increase in the incidence of diabetes, cancer, cardiovascular diseases, kidney failures and traffic injuries over the last few decades. “The machines will be of immense benefit to patients,” he said.

According to the medical superintendent, Dr Gosar Pemba, prior to the introduction of ultrasound machines in the hospital, most investigation to detect anything inside the body was done through X-ray.

“The machines will greatly enhance the diagnostic capability of health workers and treatment outcome will be satisfactory,” he said.

Ultrasonography machines are used mainly for abdominal problems, such as gallstones and acute trauma.  The hospital now has five ultrasonography machines, and three C-arms.

The C-arm machine is used in various surgical and non-surgical procedures.  Besides using it in orthopaedic surgery, the machine is also used in areas of pain management, cardiology, minimal invasive surgeries, urology, spinal and neurovascular applications.

Dr Gosar Pemba said that the C-arm machine displays the image of broken bones, which allows surgeons to align the bone into a correct position and accordingly treat a patient.  One C-arm machine will be used at the urology unit to help treat patients with kidney stones.

With the new machines in place, orthopaedic surgeon, Dr Sonam Dorji, said that the hospital would not have to face problems as it had in the past when the machine broke down. “Such machines are indispensable for a modern day surgery,” he said.

By Dechen Tshomo