Emirati cancer patient gets tongue replaced with forearm flap in UAE


Emirati cancer patient gets tongue replaced with forearm flap in UAE

Doctors performed an intensive nine-hour surgery to reconstruct her tongue.

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Published: Tue 15 May 2018, 12:24 PM

Last updated: Tue 15 May 2018, 2:32 PM

In a nine-hour intensive surgery, doctors in the UAE removed the tongue of a patient, and replaced it with a forearm free flap. 
A female Emirati patient, in her forties, was diagnosed with tongue cancer, according to Dr Myung-Whun Sung, CEO of the Sheikh Khalifa hospital.
"The patient who was suffering from complications of the disease underwent excision of tongue and reconstruction of a new one with the forearm free flap."
The patient was diagnosed with tongue cancer after her biopsy. Her follow-up MRI and other investigations showed lymph nodes in the neck without distant metastasis.
"On pre-operation workup, it was discovered that she had deep vein thrombosis with lower limb swelling," he said.
A surgical team headed by Dr Myung Whun Sung and Dr Ahmed Al Damm, head and neck consultant in the Sheikh Khalifa hospital in Ras Al Khaimah decided to proceed with the surgery, Sung pointed out. 
"The patient received two cycles of chemotherapy to reduce the size of the mass." After that, the clinical team was encouraged to take the decision and undertake the complicated surgery due to its complexities.
The surgery took nine hours to do radical glossectomy, right neck dissection and left radial forearm free flap, he disclosed. "The surgery was done successfully and the patient was kept in the ICU for five days then transferred to the ward to continue her medical care."
The flap was perfectly in place, he affirmed. "The patient was meanwhile trained to swallow, move the new tongue, speak and use other functions, too."
Eventually, the patient does not have any complications and is visiting the hospital for outpatient regular follow up, Sung stated.


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