Throm­bol­y­sis avail­able at QEH to treat stroke

The Borneo Post (Sabah) - - FRONT PAGE - By Fiqah Roslan

KOTA KINABALU: Stroke is one of the top non-con­ta­gious dis­eases (NCD) that con­trib­ute to 73 per cent of mor­tal­ity in Malaysia, af­ter heart at­tack.

An es­ti­mated 35 per cent of deaths oc­cur among those be­low the age of 60 and who are still work­ing, said Sabah State Health De­part­ment di­rec­tor Datuk Dr Christina Rundi.

“This means that Malaysia has a ‘sick’ and ‘at risk’ pop­u­la­tion of con­tract­ing NCD. What is more wor­ri­some is that a large num­ber of Malaysians also do not know they have un­di­ag­nosed NCD risk fac­tors, which re­sult in late di­ag­no­sis that come with com­pli­ca­tions,” she said at a pub­lic fo­rum on stroke or­gan­ised by the United Sabah Chi­nese Com­mu­ni­ties As­so­ci­a­tion of Kota Kinabalu (USCCAKK) in col­lab­o­ra­tion with Queen Eliz­a­beth Hos­pi­tal (QEH), yes­ter­day.

Her speech was de­liv­ered by QEH di­rec­tor Dr Wil­liam Go­tulis.

She added that a new form of treat­ment known as throm­bol­y­sis has been avail­able at QEH since Fe­bru­ary this year, which helps pre­vent stroke from es­ca­lat­ing and dis­solves blood clots in the brain.

How­ever, the treat­ment is only suit­able for pa­tients that meet strict cri­te­ria, she said, em­pha­sis­ing the im­por­tance of early de­tec­tion.

“Throm­bol­y­sis can only be given to pa­tients who, among other fac­tors, are di­ag­nosed within the first 4.5 hours of the stroke oc­cur­ring. It also can­not be ad­min­is­tered to treat haem­or­rhagic stroke.

“That’s why it’s very im­por­tant to seek im­me­di­ate med­i­cal at­ten­tion so that doc­tors would be able to as­sess whether or not throm­bol­y­sis is an op­tion,” she said.

Ac­cord­ing to Rundi, throm­bol­y­sis is cur­rently avail­able at QEH II, Duchess of Kent Hos­pi­tal, San­dakan, Tawau Hos­pi­tal, La­had Datu Hos­pi­tal and Keningau Hos­pi­tal.

Mean­while, Health and Peo­ple’s Well­be­ing Min­is­ter Datuk Stephen Wong en­cour­aged the pub­lic at large to take charge of their health so as to avoid stroke al­to­gether.

“Share the in­for­ma­tion you ob­tained from this fo­rum with fam­ily and friends to spread aware­ness on stroke.

“Con­duct reg­u­lar health checks to en­sure your health is al­ways at its best. Ex­er­cis­ing reg­u­larly is also im­por­tant, as well as a bal­anced diet and healthy life­style,” he said. He was rep­re­sented by As­sis­tant Min­is­ter No­ra­zli­nah Arif.

USCCAKK pres­i­dent Datuk Su­san Wong said in­creas­ingly young peo­ple have been stricken by stroke over the years due to poor diet and un­healthy habits in mod­ern life­style, hence the fo­rum will help spread aware­ness.

“The World Stroke Or­gan­i­sa­tion has set Oc­to­ber 29 as World Stroke Day ev­ery year to pro­mote pub­lic aware­ness of stroke. To­day, we are happy to have our fel­low speak­ers to share with us their ex­ten­sive med­i­cal knowl­edge on stroke,” she said.

The fo­rum fea­tured three top­ics, which were stroke over­view and stroke man­age­ment and pre­ven­tion by HQE se­nior con­sul­tant neu­rol­o­gist Dr Chia Yuen Khang, stroke re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion by HQE re­hab physi­cian Dr Jam­mie Joseph and back­ground, as well as rules and ser­vices of­fered by Na­tional Stroke As­so­ci­a­tion of Malaysia by NASAM Sabah chair­per­son Jas­mi­nah Ali.

Dr Wil­liam (third right), No­ra­zli­nah (cen­tre) and Su­san (fifth left) with in­vited guests and speak­ers at the pub­lic fo­rum on stroke yes­ter­day.

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