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Innovation in Scarless Surgery for Removal of Colonic and Gastric Polyps

Samitivej Sukhumvit Hospital continues to reinforce its position of liver and digestive specialist in Thailand through its collaboration with Sano Hospital, a leading Japanese hospital specializing in Gastrointestinal Endoscopy and Image Enhanced Endoscopy. Prof. Yasushi Sano M.D., Hospital Director of Sano Hospital and Chief of the Institute of Minimally-Invasive Endoscopic Care, who is himself well-recognized throughout Japan as being a founder of the Narrow Band Imaging International Colorectal Endoscopic Classification (NICE) with magnification technique, and who is highly prominent in Western medicine, now brings the latest in medical innovation to Samitivej Hospital: Endoscopic Submucosal Dissection (ESD).

Nithiwat Gijsriurai, M.D., Hospital Director of Samitivej Sukhumvit Hospital, spoke about the collaboration explaining that “The main objective is the development of our gastroenterologists in diagnosis and treatment using advanced endoscopy. Our goal is to provide comprehensive diagnosis of gastrointestinal diseases, with cutting-edge technology and specialists, and with a focus on screening for the prevention of diseases, especially colorectal and stomach cancers, both of which are significant and commonly found. We also aim to provide accurate diagnosis from the earliest stages of disease, and to provide treatment equivalent to or higher than international standards, even in cases where complications arise, in order to achieve maximum efficiency of care. Over the past 3 years, Samitivej has participated in a medical exchange program allowing their gastroenterologists to study the latest endoscopic techniques from Sano Hospital in Japan.”

This year, Samitivej has introduced a new scarless surgical technique as part of its collaboration with Sano Hospital. Endoscopic Submucosal Dissection (ESD) uses endoscopy to remove colonic or gastric polyps. ESD technique is used for both diagnosis and treatment. Normally, when doctors discover polyps during a colonoscopy, they can be removed immediately as these are small. However size is a limitation; large polyps cannot be removed the same way. With the ESD technique, however, surgeons can remove large polyps from the colon or stomach without the need for open surgery. This minimizes surgical risks, removing the need for abdominal incisions (scarless), shortening hospitalization, and allows patients to recover much more rapidly. All of this enables patients to return to their normal lifestyle more quickly, reduces complications and increases safety levels.

Samitivej organized a medical conference combining seminars and workshops for Samitivej medical teams, as well as for gastroenterologists from other hospitals who are interested in joining. The topics include:

  • How to achieve an excellent quality colonoscopy
  • How to achieve good bowel preparation
  • How to stratify the risk of colonic polyps
  • How to manage colonic polyps

The workshop is divided into 2 parts:

  • ESD workshop sessions
  • How to close the perforation stations

Prof. Yasushi Sano M.D., the Hospital Director of Sano Hospital and Chief of the Institute of Minimally-Invasive Endoscopic Care, stated that “Samitivej is widely recognized as a private hospital that Japanese patients trust and use the services of most frequently.  This collaboration allows us to bring our knowledge and expertise in the area of endoscopy to support the Liver and Digestive Institute of Samitivej. The goal is to provide service and healthcare to many more patients, especially Japanese patients in Thailand. Previously, we introduced Narrow Band Imaging (NBI) with magnification technique, which allows doctors to detect polyps in their very early stages, even when they are not yet bulged or easily visible. This shortens the duration of surgeries, allows patients to recover quickly and reduces complications, etc. We believe that these advances will further benefit patients’ quality of life, and will provide greater peace of mind for all patients.”

The Samitivej Liver and Digestive Institute specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of conditions related to the liver and gastrointestinal system, including a variety of more complex diagnoses and treatments. These include infections, alcohol-related diseases, cirrhosis, fatty liver disease, pancreatitis, gallstones, stomach cancer, colon cancer, and many others. The Institute uses the latest, most comprehensive medical innovations and technologies, and has a team of medical specialists and professionals ready to serve its patients. Staffed by 10 specialist doctors, 12 nurses, and 4 technicians, the Institute is located on the 2nd floor of Samitivej Sukhumvit Hospital and features 12 examination rooms, 5 endoscopy rooms and 10 patient recovery rooms.

The Liver and Digestive Institute provides its services to both Thai and foreign patients. Japanese patients, in particular, currently represent the largest group of patients. Each year, Samitivej provides services to as many as 120,000 Japanese patients, or an average of about 400 per day, making Samitivej the private hospital serving the largest number of Japanese patients outside of Japan itself. In fact, Samitivej opened its specialized Japanese Medical Center in October of 2010, with Japanese language interpreters and on-site Japanese-speaking medical personnel as well.