KATH doctors cry over 500% increase in stroke cases 

Story: Nana Peprah 

Medical practitioners at the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital have raised concerns about a surge in the number of stroke cases recorded annually at the facility.

Neurologists at the hospital reported that the hospital records about 1000 cases annually, a figure that represents a 500% increase as compared to previous years.

This surge has called for interventions such as the introduction of thrombolysis in stroke treatment at the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital.

Thrombolysis is a medical procedure used to break up abnormal blood clots that restrict blood flow in the veins and arteries.

This intervention seeks to cure strokes detected within 24 hours.

A neurologist at the Komfo Anokye Hospital, Prof. Fred Stephen Sarfo, has raised concerns about the surge in the number of stroke cases, highlighting the need for thrombolysis and condemned the activities of unqualified herbalists who claim to have a cure for stroke.

Prof. Fred Stephen Sarfo indicated that, “when you look at the numbers we have currently, in a year we admit about one thousand patients with stroke as compared to the 1980s, which admitted about 200 stroke patients in a year.

“So over the 40 years there has been an almost 500% increase in the number of stroke patients admitted annually in Komfo Anokye alone and the picture is similar in most of the health facilities across the country.”

The neurologist added, “when somebody suffers a stroke, essentially, what happens is that there’s a blood clot sitting in the vessel taking blood to the brain so the reason why the person cannot talk or has paralysis is because a part of the brain is not working because it is not receiving blood. So that blood clot that is preventing blood from getting to the part of the brain is what we seek to dissolve with treatment ( thrombolysis)so that we can restore blood flow to the brain to cure the stroke.”

The CEO of Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital, Prof. Dr. Otchere Addai-Mensah, speaking at the launch of the implementation of thrombolysis in stroke treatment, lamented the surge in the number of cases and called on individuals with stroke or suspected stroke to seek immediate treatment at the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital.

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