17/05/2022 - 06:35

Cancer treatment in Hue: The picture with bright colors

TTH.VN - "Looking at the picture of cancer, many people find it very dark. But for me, it's different; I see this picture lighting up every time. The opportunity for patients to detect and successfully treat cancer is more favorable than ever…". That message was given by Prof. Nguyen Chan Hung - Chairman of the Vietnam Cancer Society at the Annual Conference on Cancer Prevention and Control - Hue 2021. And that "picture" is being decorated by the Oncology Center (Hue Central Hospital) with brighter andvivid colors.

Children are being distracted during radiation therapy

More happy people

If not told, it would be difficult for people to recognize Mr. Le Đ. Đ. (Trieu Phong, Quang Tri) at first glance as a patient undergoing cancer treatment. He was talkative, laughed a lot, and talked freely about the disease he was being treated for - malignant rectal tumor.

Maybe the "soldier quality" was still too strong in this retired military officer, or perhaps because he had prepared himself with a good mentality to fight the disease with the doctors.

Mr. Đ. had his disease detected when the tumor was in the stage 1. After his partial colectomy surgery at Hue International Hospital, he is now having radiation therapy at the Oncology Center.

“The doctors explained it very well. After the bowel resection, I received adjuvant radiotherapy to eliminate cancer cells; with the whole procedure consisting of 25 sessions of radiotherapy, I'm almost done," said Mr. Đ while smiling. 

On the vast corridors of the Oncology Center, the story of Mr. Đ went around during the days he "fought the illness" without any burden. There was a story about an elderly father hoping to return home soon to help his wife take care of his unwell youngest daughter, about a patient taking his illness to "lift" the spirit of a teammate who had just entered the center for treatment.

He happily shared: "In the past, every time I heard about the tumor, I was scared. The malignant tumor made me even feel scarier; I did not dare let those surgical instruments touch my body. But now it's different. If you get sick, go to the hospital. Here, everything is clean and modern, and you are well cared for by medical staff, as you can rest assured."

Having just had a chemotherapy session, Ms. Phan Thi T. T. (Lam Dong) seemed tired and needed IV fluids. Ms. T. has gorgeous eyes, attracting all eyes of the opposite person, despite her hair growing with only a few short scattered strands.

At the end of 2021, after visiting her hometown in Quang Tri, Ms. T. went to Hue for her health check-up and was diagnosed with cervical cancer. Since then, she has left two young children with her husband and mother to focus on treatment. With stage 3 of the disease, she was treated with a combination of chemotherapy - radiotherapy. She was halfway through the course of treatment.

“The day I first found out I was sick, I was down and worried a lot. But now, my mental health is getting better. At home, I have a supportive husband and family. Here, I was advised, encouraged, and given a clear treatment schedule by the doctors, so I felt very safe. I follow doctors’ instructions with all my heart,” said Ms. T.

Tired, she couldn't talk much, but the belief that one day she would be healthy enough to return to her small children and daily life was strongly held. Then she looked at her roommates and warmly said: "Apart from some tiring days, everyone here is optimistic, happy, and even sings to encourage each other. People from various provinces come here for medical treatment, then meet and support each other spiritually, taking care of each other like relatives. Just like that, you can rest assured and follow the treatment given by doctors."

Sharing strength sharing work

Currently, the Oncology Center of Hue Central Hospital has 500 beds, with 5 treatment departments, including: Surgery, Radiation, Chemotherapy, Palliative Care and Nuclear Medicine. Many advanced and modern techniques are applied at the center, establishing its position equal to the global oncology centers in terms of equipment and treatment efficiency.

In 2015, Hue Central Hospital officially put into use the most modern linear accelerator for cancer treatment in Vietnam at the Oncology Center. It was the Axesse Elekta linear accelerator for cancer treatment, which belongs to the Austrian Government's ODA Project with a funding of 6 million USD. Patients benefited from various advanced radiotherapy techniques such as intensity-modulated radiotherapy, volumetric modulated arc therapy, localized radiosurgery, etc. The system has a variety of energy levels to meet each type of tumor.

Besides, the hospital also has a Cone Beam Computed Tomography system that controls the actual image of the targeted volumes. A robot system adjusts the appropriate positions of patients, making the beam flow nearest to the tumor to give the most effective treatment.

Accumulated through time, the Oncology Center was invested by Hue Central Hospital with more specialized and modern equipment. At the same time, they took advantage of funding sources and created favorable conditions for the team of doctors, technicians, and engineers to participate in training classes to improve their professional capacity when having the opportunity to study abroad, to meet the requirements of the medical examination and treatment for domestic and foreign cancer patients.

Up to now, doctors and surgeons have implemented many complex and delicate surgical techniques such as both cancer surgery and a combination of cosmetic-functional surgery; application of new therapies, such as molecular targeted therapy and immunotherapy; applying combined chemotherapy - radiotherapy regimens for various types of cancer, through consultation of the tumor board according to the cancer treatment modality, called combination therapy, with global standard.

Introducing the outstanding achievements in cancer treatment at the unit, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Pham Nguyen Tuong, Deputy Director of the Oncology Center, emphasized: Achieving the most effective cancer treatment requires a combination of many methods: surgery, radiation, chemotherapy, targeted therapy, hormone therapy... In which it is essential to combine various therapies. With a patient diagnosed with cancer, at any stage, there is a panel of experts in the fields of medical treatment, surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy, radiology, pathology, and functional exploration; they would sit down together to suggest the best treatment for that patient, according to the principles of personalized medicine, where no one is the same.

Therefore, the success of the Oncology Center is the success of various departments in the hospital working together. Many domestic units cannot tackle this issue, although they have potential and strengths, they have not reached a joint decision, so they have not brought tangible results.

After 9 years of being held, the Annual Conference on Cancer Prevention and Control – Hue has proven its reputation for scientific quality, attracting the attention of national and foreign oncology clinical practitioners, becoming the annual scientific conference of the Vietnam Cancer Society. The conference had two highlights, which were both a multi-therapy oncology training course and a forum for Vietnamese and foreign cancer experts to report on their research and successes during the year. From there, the strategy of cancer prevention and control in the country is brought into play more effectively both in breadth and depth.

Story: DONG VAN – Photos: provided by the Hospital

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