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On 21 November 3 December 2018, doctors from the Department of Otolaryngology and Head and Neck Surgery of the 1st Faculty of Medicine of the Charles University and the Motol University Hospital took part in a mission organised within the MEDEVAC healthcare and humanitarian programme. They stayed at the Thies Regional Hospital in Senegal. This was already a third such mission they have undertaken, whereby the first two took place in the spring and autumn of 2017.

Operations and Teaching

During their stay, Czech specialists operated on 55 patients, which is a significant increase on the 35 who were operated on during the missions in 2017. Functional endoscopic sinus surgery was performed in 19 patients aged 19 to 64. In many cases, the diagnosis was one-sided maxillary sinusitis or pansinusitis. We had to address some very wide-spread, mostly mycotic sinusitis which had resulted in the destruction of the bony borders of ocular orbit and spread in the anterior cranial fossa. Similarly, we found some highly advanced nasal polyposis, which in most cases led to pressure deformities in the skeletal structures outlining the nasal cavity and paranasal sinuses. Video recordings of the operations were saved using the AIDA system and are now available do doctors in the Thies Regional Hospital for further learning. As part of a training programme for local physicians, six doctors from various hospitals and clinics in Thies, Dakar, Congo, Guinea, and Equatorial Guinea performed parts of some procedures or entire simpler operations under Professor Plzák’s supervision.

Ear operations were carried out in 18 patients, both children and adults (aged 7 to 64). Most frequent diagnosis was uncomplicated chronic mesotympanic otitis leading to disfunction of the Eustachian tube. In addition to myringoplasties, Czech doctors have also carried out several remedial and reconstructive surgeries and stapedotomies for otosclerosis. Ear operations were demonstrated both to local doctors and physicians from hospitals and clinics further afield. Where possible, parts of the procedures were carried out by local doctors under our supervision.

Neck operations were carried out in 18 patients, both children and adults (aged 12 to 64). Thirteen of these operations were carried out by Professor Klozar, in some cases with active participation of local doctors. Some operations were carried out by surgeons from Thies and Czech experts participated in supervision. Most of these procedures concerned surgery of the soft tissue of neck: thyroidectomy, resection of a large lymphangioma of the neck, partial external maxillectomy necessitated by odontogenic cysts with deformities of the facial skeleton, maxillectomy necessitated by extensive fibrous dysplasia, etc.

All operations were carried out without any serious complications. We educated both the patients and the personnel about post-operative care, carried out regular post-op checks during hospitalisations, and ambulatory check-ups after patients’ release from the hospital.


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