Monday, 31 December 2012

Do you remember the first time you did it?

Dr Ray Ulan does, it was 21st December 1962, in Edmonton, Canada. He carried out the first hemodialysis treatment in Canada - what did you think I was discussing? ;)

The patient was Diane Sutton, 17 years old and expected to die, because that's what happened back then when your kidneys failed. And she nearly did, as part of the new equipment was missing.

Years later, Ulan would eventually lead Edmonton’s burgeoning nephrology specialty, watching dialysis improve and more patients receive successful transplants until his retirement a few years ago. Dialysis currently helps over 1,100 patients at 22 sites in northern Alberta.

You can read about it in the Edmonton Journal

Don't take some things as just routine, sometimes it was anything but routine.

Friday, 14 December 2012

New implant trial in UK hospitals

St George’s Hospital in London and Central Manchester University Hospital are trialling a new implant for hemodialysis patients, in an attempt to reduce scar tissue formation associated with traditional methods of attaching patients to machines.

The system they are testing is called Optiflow, made by BioConnect Systems. Eric Chemla, Consultant Renal Transplant and Vascular Surgeon at St George’s, who was the first surgeon in Europe to fit the tube, says: ‘There has been a huge rise in the demand for dialysis in recent years because of lifestyle-related illnesses such as diabetes. ‘This device has the potential to improve and save the lives of so many and, depending on long-term results, should be rolled out nationally by 2013.’

The strange thing is a search on google suggests that this is a system mentioned in 2010 as having European certification, and other instants have dates of 2006. So has the UK been sitting around ignoring new developments, or is this a new model? Or is it just the Daily Mail (link below)being slow to report on things? ;)

Read Daily Mail article, December 2012:

The Optiflow system was the subject of a research paper by some of the same team (plus others from outside the UK), published back in April 2012, which you can read here., while an earlier article from January 2011 mentions the device and describes the first UK implant as having taken place. This article has some nice graphics of the system as well.