THE University College Hospital (UCH), Ibadan, on Monday successfully carried out its first open heart surgery to correct a leaking heart valve in a 19-year-old secondary school leaver.

The surgery, which lasted about four hours, was the first to be performed by any teaching hospital in Nigeria. It was carried out by the hospital in conjunction with a team of surgeons from Tri-State Cardiovascular Delaware, United States (U.S.), led by Dr. Kamar Adeleke.

Chief Medical Director (CMD) of the UCH, Prof. Temitope Alonge, noted that the UCH was moved to embark on this exercise as a way of alleviating the hardship being experienced by Nigerians who have one heart related problem or another.

According to Alonge, UCH being the first teaching hospital in Nigeria should take the lead in critical areas of medicine and that this propelled him into ensuring that a surgery as complex as an open heart surgery took place in the hospital, saying: “We are the pioneer teaching hospital in Nigeria, and we should be taking the lead. We are going to do this and we intend to make it a continuous exercise. In fact, within the next six months, we intend carrying out not less than 30 heart related surgeries and at a price that will be easily affordable to Nigerians.”


[source: The Guardian]