Friday, August 7, 2009

Gold Rush! 920 Gallstones Found In Lady Sets New World Record

Photo Courtesy of Thairath

NONG KHAI – If you stare at this photo for long enough you might start to feel a little hungry. The thought of someone having an abandoned mine shaft in their digestive tract, filled with nine hundred and twenty crystallized deposits is…uh… appetizing? Anyways, I’d recommend this story with a bit of egg on toast.

The chief administrator at Yuparatchathabo Hospital recently announced a new record in gallstone laparoscopy: 920 gallstones found in a woman from Nong Khai. The excavation set a new world record in gallstone extraction surgery.

The Thai surgeon pioneering this trendy procedure only took seventeen minutes to complete the operation. Word has spread fast and many rock-heavy Laotians are now swimming and boating across the Mekong River to get treatment. Some swimmers have sank in the deep water and warning signs have since been placed on the river side explaining that people should avoid swimming with rocks in their stomachs.

Doctor Wattana Parisri, the chief administrator of Yuparatchathabo Hospital in Nong Khai province, stated that in June, the hospital had the opportunity to participate in a health event in Vientiane, capital of Lao Peoples Democratic Republic. The Thai embassy in Vientiane assisted in setting up a medical booth at the event. Many Laotians showed great interest in the hospital’s health care services; and were particularly heavy on issues regarding the gallbladder and digestive tract.

Doctor Wattana also mentioned that in the last two to three years, Yuparatchathabo Hospital has had an increase in the number of medical services offered to Laotians coming from across the Mekong River to Thailand.

The increase has come as a result of the hospitals exalted reputation in gall bladder and liver gallstone surgery. Yuparatchathabo hospital also topped rankings in a number of other gallstone treatments with over 5,000 patients.

Approximately 10% of people over the age of forty in the eastern provinces of Thailand appear to have gallstones in their gall bladder or liver. Medical professionals are unsure why this is the case. It could be genetic; maybe it’s the drinking water; or perhaps people are having pebbles for dinner.

Doctor Wattana further stated that medical surgeons in Yuparatchathabo hospital are highly proficient in performing gallstone procedures. Using a laparoscope, operations are typically finished in 15 to 30 minutes. Patients are back at home within a few days. The wounds made for the laparoscopes are small and do not cause much pain.

Crowned as the world record holder of gall stones, Mrs. Khamfong Duangsomsri, aged 53, walked out from the operating theater after seventeen minutes of surgery. At 920 gallstones, the figure topped world rankings for most gallstones extracted from a person. The previous record stood at 232 gallstones. Mrs. Khamfong is considering a career in Television.

The hospital also has plans of it own: to develop gallstone technology and to become the main hub in the Asian-Pacific for gallstone laparoscopy. The hospital also hopes to lift standards in orthopedics in order to attract patients both domestically and internationally.

So, what of the 920 stones? Maybe Mrs. Khamfong could use them for a bit of cheap landscape architecture? Build a Japanese Zen garden. Anyways, there’s a gold rush going on at Nong Khai so find yourself a donkey and leave first thing in the morning. Ho Ha!

Courtesy of Thairath

Writer: Adrian Tse & Chet Chetchotisak