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11
Apr
2024

She celebrates Hari Raya, thanks to liver transplant and altruistic donor

The Straits Times © SPH Media Limited. Reproduced with permission

​14-year-old Falisha Zafilin, who was diagnosed with primary sclerosing cholangitis, received a life-saving liver transplant from an altruistic donor in October 2022. The transplant surgery was conducted at NUH and Falisha’s primary doctor, Dr S. Venkatesh Karthik, Senior Consultant at NUCOT and KTP-NUCMI, NUH, shared that the team was gratified to witness Falisha’s recovery journey and continues to monitor her progress post-liver transplantation closely. Falisha now enjoys a new lease of life and participates actively in school activities.


Media ArticlesNUH in the News
8
Apr
2024

Scientists grow 'mini kidneys,' revealing new insights into metabolic defects and potential therapy for polycystic kidney disease

Others

​Researchers at NTU Singapore have successfully cultivated 'mini kidneys' in laboratory settings and transplanted them into live mice, shedding light on metabolic abnormalities and potential therapeutic interventions for polycystic kidney disease (PKD). A/Prof Ng Kar Hui, Senior Consultant at the Division of Paediatric Nephrology, Dialysis, and Renal Transplantation, Department of Paediatrics, KTP-NUCMI, NUH, noted that PKD is one of the biggest causes of chronic kidney diseases among adults, and that an effective treatment may potentially ameliorate the rising numbers of people with kidney failure in Singapore. She added that the establishment of such models in live organisms could lead to the discovery of more treatment options.

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1
Apr
2024

Major shift that could mean having to build one less hospital

The Straits Times © SPH Media Limited. Reproduced with permission

​An The Straits Times feature on the Mobile Inpatient Care @ Home (MIC@Home) scheme highlighted that virtual hospitals that became a mainstream programme in April could potentially eliminate the need for another large public hospital once fully established. Participating hospitals include all hospitals under National University Health System, which has already treated nearly 4,000 patients through NUHS@Home since 2020.

The Straits Times highlighted the positive experience of current NUHS@Home patient Mr Ong Jia Rong, who opted for the programme after being diagnosed with severe cellulitis. He shared that he is confident of the team treating him and feels more comfortable at home. The feature also detailed the home visit by NUHS@Home Clinical Lead Dr Sandra Tan and Assistant Nurse Clinician Wang Yanan.

Dr Stephanie Ko, Lead for NUHS@Home, elaborated on the benefits to receiving treatments at home rather than in hospitals. She noted that National University Hospital, Ng Teng Fong General Hospital and Alexandra Hospital are also looking to include cancer and transplant patients under the programme. Mr Johnny Wong, Operations and Administration Lead for NUHS@Home, also shared how the MIC@Home scheme can reduce costs for hospitals.

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21
Mar
2024

Singaporean At Heart - An Advocate For Kidney Patients

Channel NewsAsia

Singaporean At Heart, an exclusive CNA series, showcases the inspiring stories of global trailblazers who have made Singapore their home. An episode spotlights Prof A Vathsala, the Co-Director of National University Centre for Organ Transplantation (NUCOT) and Head of Medicine at National University Hospital and NUS Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, whose efforts have made kidney transplant patient outcomes in Singapore among the best in the world.

The episode highlighted the story of how she became a medical leader, educator and researcher in the fields of nephrology and kidney transplantation. A/Prof Tiong Ho Yee, Surgical Director & Senior Consultant of the Adult Kidney Transplantation Programme at NUCOT, shared how Prof Vathsala’s leadership has shaped the kidney transplant programme in Singapore.

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16
Mar
2024

New treatments can slow progress of kidney disease, delay need for dialysis

The Straits Times © SPH Media Limited. Reproduced with permission

ST’s The Big Story and Insight delved into the issue of kidney failure in Singapore following the publication of the 2022 Singapore Renal Registry Annual Report. The extensive feature discussed trends in treatments and dialysis, including new medications that slow the progress of kidney disease. 

Dr Chua Horng Ruey, Head and Senior Consultant, Division of Nephrology, Department of Medicine, NUH, shared his expert input in these topic areas, particularly on the new drugs that have been placed on the standard drug list and subsidised, known as sodium glucose co-transporter-2 (SGLT2) inhibitors, which have been shown to slow down the progression of kidney failure. He also discussed the option of supportive care for kidney failure patients instead of dialysis to manage symptoms and optimise well-being for those who are older and those with significant comorbidities.

ST also interviewed Mdm Chow, one of Dr Chua’s patients who is benefitting from the newer kidney disease treatments to slow the progress of the condition.

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31
Jan
2024

‘I thought I was going to lose her,’ says father

The Straits Times © SPH Media Limited. Reproduced with permission

​ST featured NUH patient Huang Siqing who was diagnosed with a very rare disease called atypical hemolytic uremic syndrome (aHUS) in 2017 and was warded in the intensive care unit for two months. As her condition was initially dire and did not improve, her mother’s friend recommended them to Prof Yap Hui Kim, Head & Emeritus Consultant, Division of Paediatric Nephrology, Dialysis and Renal Transplantation, KTP-NUCMI, NUH. The NUH medical team including Associate Consultant Dr David Lu treated her with plasmapheresis and the drug eculizumab, which successfully improved her health. Siqing completed treatment in January 2018 and now leads a normal life. Her father said that they are grateful Prof Yap was able to administer the appropriate treatment to help Siqing recover.


Prof Yap commended Siqing for her bravery and highlighted the strong support by her parents. 

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15
Jan
2024

துவாழ்வு நரம் உறுப்பு தாளம் (Organ donation gives new life)

Tamil Murasu © SPH Media Limited. Reproduced with permission

​A/Prof Shridhar Ganpathi Iyer, Senior Consultant, Division of Hepatobiliary & Pancreatic Surgery, Department of Surgery, and Surgical Director of the Adult Liver Transplantation Programme, NUCOT, said that since the outbreak of COVID-19, the number of people coming forward to donate organs has dropped. He said the average waiting time in Singapore for a kidney transplant from a deceased donor is nine years. NUH patients Satya and Diksha Anand have kidney failure. Diksha had dialysis at NUH Children’s Kidney Centre three times a week for nearly four hours each time. In 2018 when Diksha was 10, she received kidneys from a deceased donor. Satya still undergoes peritoneal dialysis while waiting for a kidney transplant.

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8
Dec
2023

NUH docs use mouth tissue to mend man’s ureter in novel surgery

The Straits Times © SPH Media Limited. Reproduced with permission

Surgeons from NUH have successfully carried out a novel surgical procedure to preserve a man’s kidneys, by repairing his ureter using tissue from inside his mouth. The four-hour surgery in September 2022 is believed to be a first in Singapore. A/Prof Tiong Ho Yee, Senior Consultant, Department of Urology, NUH, said the main advantage of this technique is that it is an elegant solution that spares the patient from a more difficult and riskier operation that requires open surgery. 
 
In media reports, Dr Melissa Tay, Consultant, Department of Urology, NUH, explained the rationale of using the buccal mucosa, which thrives in a moist environment, for repairing the ureter. 

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1
Dec
2023

前线追踪 | 等候名单最长 他洗肾十年仍抱着希望 (Frontline: Longest waiting list; he continues to remain optimistic despite being on dialysis for 10 years)

Others

​In a Frontline feature on organ donation and transplantation, Dr Emmett Wong, Consultant, Adult Kidney Transplantation Programme, NUCOT, NUH, discussed the causes and symptoms of end-stage kidney failure, as well as the benefits of living donor kidney transplantation. He also shared that the risk of kidney donors developing kidney failure themselves in the future is marginal.

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28
Nov
2023

搭配全息投影技术 病人静脉跃然眼前 (With holographic projection through 5G technology, patient’s veins appear before one’s eyes)

联合早报 © SPH Media Limited. Reproduced with permission

National University Health System (NUHS) Holomedicine programme was showcased as one of the cutting-edge projects that are part of the Infocomm Media Development Authority’s $30 million 5G Innovation Programme. The NUHS indoor private 5G Enterprise and mobile-edge computing network has been deployed in 10 operating theatres since August 2023 and three inpatient wards since early November 2023. 

Dr Gao Yujia, Assistant Group Chief Technology Officer, NUHS, and Consultant, Division of Hepatobiliary & Pancreatic Surgery, National University Hospital, explained that in preparation for complex surgeries such as liver transplants and brain tumour removal, the doctor and the patient each wear a HoloLens device to view the patient's 3D scan as part of patient education prior to the procedure. 

He also said the technology can be used to identify patients’ veins for blood-taking, greatly enhancing the success rates of blood draws for patients with small veins. With 5G-enabled technology, the time it takes for patients’ scans to be converted to 3D images has also been reduced from approximately 20 to 25 seconds to less than one second.

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11
Nov
2023

马国男孩罕见肝炎复发随母来新求医 (Malaysian boy with rare hepatitis relapse comes to Singapore with his mother to seek medical treatment)

联合早报 © SPH Media Limited. Reproduced with permission

ZB reported that a mother from Malaysia is seeking a liver donor through social media for her son, who was diagnosed with primary sclerosing cholangitis (PSC).

Dr James Huang, Consultant, Paediatric Liver Transplantation Programme, NUCOT, NUH, commenting generally on PSC, shared the causes of the disease as well as treatment options, highlighting that among children with PSC, about 30 per cent will need a liver transplant within 10 years of being first diagnosed with the condition. 

NUH did not provide further details on the case due to patient confidentiality, but shared that non-related persons who wish to donate to a specific person (directed donation) can approach the transplant centre for assessment. Non-related persons who wish to donate to anyone on the waitlist (non-directed donation) can approach the National Organ Transplant Unit (NOTU).

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30
Oct
2023

Public hospitals in S’pore seeing rise in high-risk pregnancies

The Straits Times © SPH Media Limited. Reproduced with permission

ST reported that public hospitals including NUH have seen an increase in the number of visits to specialised high-risk pregnancy centres and clinics. NUH saw an estimated 9,400 visits by high-risk pregnancy patients in 2021, and this increased to about 9,900 visits in 2022. In 2023, the number is projected to rise to about 10,400, based on patient numbers so far.

Dr Anita Kale, Senior Consultant, Division of Maternal Fetal Medicine, Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, NUH, noted that patients with complicated medical conditions like kidney or liver failure are now better managed with the availability of organ transplants. As the health of these patients improves after transplant, they are able to plan pregnancy which needs multidisciplinary management.

Media ArticlesNUH in the News
27
Sep
2023

When IBD flares up

The Straits Times © SPH Media Limited. Reproduced with permission

​An ST feature on the rise of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) indicated that NUH has observed an increase from almost 400 cases in 2018 to about 600 active cases of IBD in recent years. The article cited Dr Juanda Leo Hartono, Senior Consultant, Division of Gastroenterology & Hepatology, Department of Medicine, NUH, who explained that stress could be a factor in the rise in IBD cases. He also shared that emerging therapies like stool transplants have worked to manage symptoms in three out of five stool transplant patients under his care.

Media ArticlesNUH in the News
27
Aug
2023

A life full of miracles

The Sunday Times © SPH Media Limited. Reproduced with permission

Lawyer Jennifer Yeo started the Viva Foundation for Children with Cancer in 2006 after her son had leukaemia. After being diagnosed at the age of three, Frederick underwent rounds of chemotherapy, suffered two relapses and a second cancer on top of the first, endured a bone marrow transplant and coped with a difficult recovery. 
 
Through his doctor at NUH, Frederick was selected by the St Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee in the US for a transplant in 2004. The Yeos did not have to pay for the treatment as it was part of the hospital’s research to improve cure rates. 

Media ArticlesNUH in the News
16
Aug
2023

Cancer among younger Americans is on the rise, new study shows

Others

A recent study published in JAMA Network Open has highlighted a concerning trend of increasing cancer rates among younger Americans, particularly women. The study showed that cancers among people under 50 have slightly increased overall, with the largest increases seen in the 30 to 39 age group. Gastrointestinal, endocrine, and breast cancers were climbing at the fastest rates. 

The senior author of the study, Assistant Professor Daniel Huang from NUS Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine and Senior Consultant, Division of Gastroenterology & Hepatology, and Adult Liver Transplantation Programme, National University Centre for Organ Transplantation, National University Hospital, was cited in the reports.

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