2015 ASCoN Conference – the 5th and final P is for Practice

It’s said practice makes perfect, and with this in mind, the 2015 ASCoN Conference decided to make good use of Prof.Wyndaele (Belgium) and Dr Apichana Kovindha (Thailand) being in Kathmandu for the conference.

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Prof. Wyndaele kicking off the Urodynamics practical workshop at SIRC.

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Dr Apichana Kovindha opening up the Urodynamics discussion on a real live case study

Prof. Wyndaele and Dr Apichana Kovindha are experts in urodynamics and so it made sense to take advantage of such expertise and schedule a post-conference workshop at SIRC for the staff.

If you are a non-medical person like me, you are probably wondering what is the purpose of urodynamics?  It’s to gain an understanding of what happens during bladder storage in a patient when the bladder fills and when it is supposed to be empty, whether volitionally or inappropriately and the problems which may lead to urinary incontinence.  Urodynamics helps get a better understanding of what is causing the patient’s symptoms and helps identify appropriate therapy.

Historically, urologic complications have been the major source of morbidity and mortality among spinal cord injured (SCI) patients. It’s recommended all SCI patients undergo urodynamic evaluation, with the initial urodynamics study done after the patient is beyond the spinal-shock phase. Management of the urinary tract in SCI individuals is recommended to be based on urodynamic principles and findings rather than on the neurologic history.

You can now see the importance of urodynamics evaluations throughout the rehabilitation and follow-up assessments for every SCI patient.  So important that ISCoS recently donated a urodynamics machine to SIRC to assist with bladder management of SCI patients.

How fortunate for SIRC to have Nepal’s 2nd only urodynamics machine in the country!  And because SIRC has NGO status, this means low-income SCI patients can avail of this evaluation without having to worry about payment.  The only other hospital with a urodynamics machine in Nepal is the privately-owned fee-paying B&B Hospital in Kathmandu.

Building on Prof.Wyndaele and Dr Apichana’s training, together with technical training from the urodynamics machine’s manufacturer, the plan is to ensure each SCI patient at SIRC receives an evaluation, thus allowing improved bladder management for all SIRC patients.  To date, a handful of patients have already benefited from an evaluation as the training progresses.

Deep appreciation to ISCoS for this important donation which not only provides our patients with enhanced rehabilitation care, but also improves the skills and expertise of the SIRC medical team.

About Kate Coffey

After 30 or so years in the investment management industry, 2013 saw me turn my life up-side-down, making my way first to Nepal, then Bangladesh during that first ‘year away’. The year took me on a journey I did not expect, had me fall in love with Nepal and its people, and become inspired at the work of Spinal Injury Rehabilitation Centre (SIRC) located in Bhainsepati - 2 hours east of Kathmandu in the Saanga foothills. Since 2014, I have returned to SIRC numerous times, working closely with the folks there in the aftermath of the 2015 earthquakes. In Bangladesh I marvelled at the strength and resilience of marginalized women who have the courage and audacity to break the rules and make a better life for themselves and their children through microfinance programs with BRAC. 2016-2017 saw me embark on a totally new experience in Sri Lanka, a place I never would have chosen to end up in. It’s the 40C+ heat, big humidity and tropical snakes & animals that scared me! But I ended up love love loving! my time there, working with predominantly Tamil small business owners in remote villages in north and east of the country, trying their best to recover their businesses and the lives of their employees, after decades of a civil war. My time in Sri Lanka made me realize my hard-earned business skills and experience can really be put to good use! The work the BIZ+ team and I did there ended up earning me International Volunteer of the Year Award in December 2017, presented on Capitol Hill, Washington DC no less. I am currently home on Bowen Island, in the west coast of Canada, shoring up my finances before I head off to who knows where, for my next expert volunteer assignment. This blog initially started out as a travelogue of sorts to keep friends and family worldwide updated while I was off on my travels in 2013-2014. Since then it has morphed into a life story of the many places I have lived and worked and of the wonderful people I have met along the way. I hope you enjoy.
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