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Vietnamese peacekeepers in South Sudan successfully give first aid to stroke patient

Vietnamese peacekeepers of Level 2 Field Hospital No. 3 in South Sudan delivered medical care to save a 50-year-old officer from a stroke on April 11.

It was the third stroke that the neurologist from the field hospital has diagnosed and managed successfully in the past 12 months.

It was also the second time that peacekeeping health workers at the field hospital effectively used ultrasound to assess the increased intracranial pressure and support the diagnosis, treatment, and prognosis of acute cerebral stroke as they lack medical equipment like CT scanners or MRIs.

His colleagues took the South Sudanese patient to the field hospital at 10 am on April 11 when the right side of his body could not move. He was still awake and able to answer calls. His blood pressure increased to very high levels.

One hour before admission, the patient suddenly became weak and had decreased sensation on the right side of the body.

Dr Dang Long Trieu, head of the medical examination department, and the hospital's deputy director Tran Dang Khoa handled the patient, controlled their blood pressure and performed tests.

In the first hour, the patient was preliminarily diagnosed with a left hemisphere stroke and suspected cerebral hemorrhage. He also had complications of increased intracranial pressure.

Although he had had a five-year history of hypertension, he had received no treatment.

With the equipment of a Level 2 field hospital, Dr Hoang Xuan Truong conducted an ultrasound scan to assess the diameter of the patient’s posterior optic nerve sheath to support a clearer diagnosis.

Results showed a marked increase in intracranial pressure, predicting brain compression. The patient was immediately given the standard protocol for cerebral stroke.

The hospital’s deputy director Tran Dang Khoa reported the case to the Chief of Health of the mission. The patient was urgently transferred to a Level-3 field hospital to have early access to specialised treatment.

Three health workers of the field hospital successfully accompanied the patient to the Level-3 Field Hospital in Uganda’s Kampala City.

Coordination between the departments and teams in the field hospitals had contributed significantly to creating the hospital's prestige and trust of patients, Khoa said, adding that they were determined to complete the United Nations peacekeeping mission./.