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Hope rises for osteoarthritis patients

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• As St. Nicholas Begins Regenerative Orthopaedic Sports Medicine In Nigeria
St. Nicholas Hospital in conjunction with Rogers Regenerative Medical Group (RRMG), has introduced regenerative orthopaedic therapies in Nigeria for persons suffering from osteoarthritis, spine pain, nerve spasms and musculoskeletal conditions.

Consultant Orthopaedic and Trauma Surgeon at St. Nicholas Hospital, Dr. Ishaq Ojodu, said a large number of Nigerians suffer from spine or joint pains, arthritis or osteoarthritis, muscle and nerve spasms, tennis elbow, tendinopathy and musculoskeletal conditions.

He said many patients could not withstand surgical treatment, with other therapies not proffering solution to their pains, hence, they live with those conditions for the rest of their lives.

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Ojodu said some patients even travel abroad to seek care, thereby contributing to the amount lost to medical tourism, adding that the regenerative orthopaedic medicine was the first in Nigeria.

Ojodu said the process was a minimally invasive, non-surgical orthopaedic treatment to patients for the fortification and healing of injuries to the skeleton, muscle, cartilage, tendons, ligaments, and other soft tissues in the body.

Consultant, Regenerative Orthopaedics and Sports Medicine, London, Dr. Ralph Rogers, said through regenerative orthopaedics, personalised treatment methods were employed to utilise the body’s recuperative systems to help correct orthopaedic injuries, while avoiding the need for surgery.

Rogers said the treatment included Lipogems, a procedure that uses processed fat cells from fat-depots in the body and injected to painful areas; Tenex – a minimally invasive technology designed to treat long-standing tendon pains; Platelet-Rich Plasma, which makes use of the concentrated platelets derived from spinning the blood of the patient, to treat the affected areas.

Other procedures are: Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy – the delivery of shock-waves from the ultrasound to the injured tissue; Radio-Frequency Ablative Therapy, which involves the use of radiofrequency energy to treat painful nerves and Cellular Matrix – an injection of the combination of Platelet-Rich Plasma and Growth factors to affected tissue.

He said the procedure did not require general anaesthesia and overnight stay in the hospital, adding that the aim was to ensure people life a pain free life in Nigeria.

The Chief Financial Officer, St. Nicholas Hospital, Mr. Diran Famakinwa, said the cost of healthcare in Nigeria was expensive, as 80 percent of the country’s population still pay out-of-pocket, while a few have health insurance.

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He said as a medical institution geared towards ensuring healthcare services were accessible by all Nigerians, regardless of status, the hospital has engaged several measures to ensure healthcare services are delivered to patients at reasonable and affordable cost.

Famakinwa said the hospital has engaged Health Maintenance Organisations (HMOs) to improve their coverage, as well as the hospital’s charity arm to provide financial support for patients.

The Clinical Director and Nephrologist, St. Nicholas Hospital, Dr. Ebun Bamgboye, said Nigeria has an aging population, who are developing degenerative diseases, which is why the hospital has introduced new modality of managing these diseases in the country.

He said the hospital was poised to deliver sustainable interventions in the area, especially in resolving joint pains for patients.

Bamgboye further added that the hospital will continue to serve the healthcare needs of its community by providing comprehensive care to prevent illness, relieve suffering, restore health and promote wellbeing during each life stage through advanced procedures and modern technology within available resources.

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