This study aimed to describe national peripheral vascular disease (PVD) risk and health burden and vascular care capacity in Ghana. The gap between PVD burden and vascular care capacity in a low- and middle-income country (LMIC) is defined and capacity improvement priorities identified.
Data to estimate PVD risk factor burden were obtained from: i) World Health Organization’s Study on Global Ageing and Health (SAGE), Ghana; and ii) Institute of Health Metrics and Evaluation Global Burden of Disease database (IHME GBD). In addition, a novel nationwide assessment of vascular care capacity was performed, with 20 vascular care items assessed at 40 hospitals in Ghana. Factors contributing to specific item deficiency were also described.
From the SAGE database, there were 4,305 respondents aged at least 50 years with data to estimate PVD risk. Out of these 57% were at moderate to high PVD risk with ≥3 risk factors, thus giving 1,654,557 persons when extrapolated nationally. Using IHME GBD data, the estimated disability-adjusted life years incurred from PVD increased 5-fold from 1990 to 2010 (1.3 to 3.2 per 100,000 persons, respectively). Vascular care capacity assessment demonstrated marked deficiencies in items for diagnosis, perioperative and vascular surgical care. Deficiencies were most often due to absence of equipment, lack of training and technology breakage.
Risk factor reduction and management as well as optimization of current resources are paramount to avoid the large burden of peripheral vascular disease falling on healthcare systems in low- and middle-income countries that are not well equipped to handle vascular surgical care, and for which rapid development of such capacity would be difficult and expensive.
Surgical skills acquisition in cardiac surgery requires consistent and hard practice. Furthermore, training using cadaver is advocated as a means of transferring learned skills to the operating room and recreate surgical situations for trainees to practice and hone their skills. We expose our experience in training for cardiac surgical procedures using human cadavers.
From June 2013 to November 2016, we performed 302 cardiac surgical procedures on 50 human cadavers obtained according to the Ivorian laws in force. Cadavers were preserved in 10% formaldehyde and by cryopreservation.
In open heart, cardiac surgical techniques were achieved via sternotomy (n = 24) or via “lid‐anterolateral thoracotomy” (n = 2). Pericardotomy (n = 26) and/or pericardiectomy (n = 26) were systematic. Aortic and caval canulations and pulmonary artery control (n = 30) were performed. After cardiotomy and arterial incisions (n = 34), 18 atrial and ventricular septal defects repair, 1 Fontan operation, 1 arterial switch, 11 enlargement procedures of the whole right ventricular outlet and 15 acquired valve heart diseases corrections were performed. In closed‐heart surgery, procedures were achieved via sternotomy (n = 7), posterolateral thoracotomy (n = 12), or Marfan retroxiphoid approach (n = 3). Pericardotomy (n = 7) or pericardiectomy (n = 7) were performed. Great vessels dissections and expositions (n = 21) were achieved to perform 4 pulmonary artery bandings, 12 patent ductus arteriosus closures, 3 Waldhausen procedures, 7 Brock Operations, and 2 Blalock‐Taussig shunts. In both situations, 29 direct pulmonary arterial, auricular, and ventricular sutures were achieved.
Surgical simulation in cadaver models offer an opportunity for trainees to practice their surgical skills before entering operating room.
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