Sunday, October 1, 2000,
Chandigarh, India
C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


‘Nothing like avoiding surgery’
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Sept 30 — The first ever live demonstration of Radio Frequency Ablation (RFA) procedure to treat liver cancer, performed at the PGI, evoked varied responses from the doctors attending a workshop on ‘Imaging and interventions in hepatic tumour’, here today.

The visiting doctors, Dr Sanjay Saini from Boston and Dr Luigi Solbiati from Busto, Italy, advocated this breakthrough technique in minimally invasive surgical procedure for curing liver carcinoma as it makes economic sense besides involving minimum possible mental and physical trauma to the patients.” “If you can avoid surgery, nothing like it,” said Dr Saini.

The Indian doctors were of the view that the technique may hold good for advanced countries. It is, however, required to first evaluate its usefulness because of an altogether different etiology of liver cancer in the country.

RFA as a technique, uses electrodes, which give electro frequency at 200 watts. This thermal energy burns the tumour with the help of a probe positioned within the tumours under ultrasound guidance. The conventional treatment of liver cancer or hepatocellular carcinoma includes surgery and chemotherapy. Methods which are cost effective but more morbid and painful.

According to Dr D.N. Srivastava from the AIIMS, Delhi, RFA helps cure the tumour or lesion in its primary stages. “ We still do not have good screening programmes. As a result, we get patients in varying advanced stages.”

Dr Sanjay Baijal from PGI, Lukhnow, agrees, “Screening procedures abroad are very aggressive. We don’t have an experience, long enough, to say whether this technique would eventually be better suited than surgery. Surgery, in this case, still remains time tested.”

Dr Saini agrees that more time is required to make RFA widely accepted. “In this case, we are at the stage, like the earlier debate on whether angioplasty or surgery was better suited for heart disorders. Abroad, latest trends in medicine include minimal invasive procedures regardless of trends. RFA entails less morbidity and cost of hospitalisation.”

In foreign countries it makes economic sense to minimise hospital stay, which might exceed cost of a surgical procedure. In India it is the other way round. Therefore it is not fair to compare feasibility of RFA, here and abroad. Early detection picks up tumours as small as 0.5 centimeters, ultimately reducing hospital expenditure and trauma to the patient,” assert Dr Saini.

However, keeping in mind all possible factors, he says that surgical solution should be the first option, at least for the time being “Maybe after five years, and enough research down the line, it may emerge as the first option.”

Dr Luigi Solbiati, who has done pioneering work in the field agrees that Indian hospitals receive delayed cases of liver carcinoma. “For a percutaneous non-surgery, tumours have to be medium sized. We have treated larger tumours with the technique, but only in combination with conventional techniques like chemoembolisation. For very large tumours, RFA may not be enough.”

Dr K.S. Soin, a doctor running a private practice in Ludhiana felt that presentation of a new technique was welcome in the country. “However, a complete evaluation is required because, unlike Italy or USA, liver tumours in India are not only due to alcohol. Here non- cirrhotic portal fibrosis caused due to adulterated food or water and hepatitis-B and C are very common.”

The workshop was earlier inaugurated by Prof S.K. Sharma, Director, PGI, who while speaking on the importance of interventional radiology commented that many surgical procedures are being replaced by non-invasive procedures.

Dr Sudha Suri, Head, Radiodiagnosis, stressed upon the importance of this breakthrough technique as liver cancer was quite common in the country. “Unfortunately, it is diagnosed very late in India. RFA could be an alternative to surgery in early cases.”


Conference on liver diseases begins today
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Sept 30 — A two-day conference on liver diseases, ‘‘Current perspective in liver diseases 2000 and single theme hepatic encephalopathy’’, begins at the PGI, tomorrow.

Organised by the Department of Hepatology, it will have deliberations on various aspects of liver diseases by eminent doctors and researchers, from India and abroad.

According to Dr Y.K. Chawla, Head, Department of Hepatology, the conference will include lectures on bilary tract diseases, radiology in liver diseases, drugs and liver, complications of portal hypertension, treatment of chronic hepatitis-B and C, vaccination in prevention of viral hepatitis and hepatic encephalopathy.

Some interesting lectures on the second day of the conference include those on pathogenesis of hepatic encephalopathy and its update on molecular mechanisms by Dr R.F. Butterworth. A presentation on interplay of portal pressure, perfusion and hepatic arterial inflow in modulating the expression of hepatic encephalopathy in patients with spontaneously or artificially created porto-systematic shunts will be made by Dr K.D. Mullen. Dr R. Jalan from Edinburg, will speak on simulated bleeding and pathogenesis of hepatic encephalopathy.

The scientific deliberations will be followed by a public forum on alcohol and liver. The panelists, besides doctors, also includes Mr M. Ramasekhar, Deputy Commissioner, Mr R.S. Cheema, senior Advocate, Punjab and Haryana High Court, Mr Amar Kulwant Singh, member, Chandigarh State Legal Services Authority and Mr Rajesh from Alcoholics Anonymous.


Mohali water samples potable
From Our Correspondent

SAS NAGAR,  Sept 30 — The State Public Health Laboratory, Punjab, has declared as potable samples of drinking water taken from different areas of the town. The samples were taken by the District Health Officer (DHO) from five houses in Phases I, IV, IIIB 2, IX and XI.

The samples were subjected to not only bacteriological but also chemical examination after collection on September 18, Dr B.S. Brar, in charge of the laboratory based in Chandigarh, said here yesterday.

He said a potability certificate had been issued, copies of which had been sent to the DHO and the Ropar Deputy Commissioner.

When asked about occasional complaints regarding the supply of “muddy” water by the Public Health Department (PHD) wing here, Dr Brar, who also holds the post of Bacteriologist Punjab, said if such water came from a proper storage tank, then it had “nothing to do with potability”. Bacteria might enter a water supply pipe from a leaking sewer pipe. However after repairs undertaken by the PHD on supply pipes, the potability of the water should be got tested once again from the state laboratory.


Experts discuss infectious diseases
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, Sept 30 — As many as 200 delegates deliberated upon the importance of pathology and microbiology in overall management of patients, during the 10th biannual conference of the Indian Association of Pathologists and Microbiologists, here today.

According to Dr Neelam Marwaha, Organising Secretary, the main aim of the conference, organised by the north-west chapter of the association, was to highlight the specific problems of the region and discuss the latest technological advances of diagnostic procedures. The role of cytology in early diagnosis of lung cancer was specifically highlighted.

The microbiologists concentrated on infectious diseases that are becoming the leading causes of death. In addition to the already existing infections,more than 40 new highly transmissible diseases have been identified, for many of which there is no cure.

The delegates also discussed the role of ecological imbalances in the emergence of infectious diseases and highlighted the relevance of the desired environment for ensuring safety from infective processes.

The transfusion medicine experts reviewed the factors ensuring safe blood transfusion. Dr J.G. Jolly, deliberated on the topic of blood component technology and its optimum management. He emphasised on relevance of safe blood and the way its economy could be introduced by making use of a technique in which a donors blood is used for three to four patients.

The cytology seminar conducted by Prof Samarjit Kaur Sandhu of GMC, Faridkot, reviewed slides of various cancer patients and stressed on the importance of diagnostic features whereby an accurate and early diagnosis of cancer could be made.

Other speakers in the conference included Dr V.K. Kak, Director Principal, GMCH-32, who while speaking about the state-of-art facilities available in the institute said that the institution would soon acquire the ISO 9000 certification.

Dr S.S. Sharma, Director, PGI while highlighting the significance of such conferences and the role of pathologists and microbiologist, said, the entire plan of patient management depended upon accurate diagnosis. 


Amanpreet upsets Simmer in inter-school tennis
By Our Sports Reporter

CHANDIGARH, Sep 30 — It was dream come true for 15-year-old Amanpreet Kaur, a ninth class student of local Government Model High School, Sector 28, when, while playing in the inter school matches in tennis, she was able to upset Simmer Kaur a renowned tennis player of the city. Amanpreet had a tough contest with Simmer before winning in three sets, 3-6, 7-5, 6-1. Amanpreet has during the past few months matured into a promising tennis star of the city. She began playing tennis at Government Model Senior Secondary School, Sector 16, and her initial grooming was done by coaches, Lachman Kapoor, and Hargobind. Later she began practising at the Lake club, Sector 16 and recently, she got the chance to be inducted to CLTA tennis stadium, Sector 10.

“Now she will be getting specialised training at the best of courts, which has during the past produced international stars like Sunil Kumar”, said her father, Mr Bikar Singh, an employee of Chandigarh Police. Amanpreet said that she was a regular at CLTA and was training under Anurag Kashyap and Robin Singh, thus hoping to do well in future competitions. Amanpreet had taken part in the various AITA tournaments held during the past year, where she was able to reach in the last eight of the event. She had also represented Chandigarh in the under 14 section at the National School Games held at Guna (MP) last year.



ONGC defeat AI in cricket tourney
By Our Sports Reporter

CHANDIGARH, Sept 30 — Sandeep Sharma was the star of the day when he enabled his team Oil and Natural Gas Commission to ground Air India by five wickets to enter the finals of the VIIIth JP Attray Memorial Cricket Tournament played here at PCA stadium, SAS Nagar.

Air India won the toss and decided to bat first. It was Niraj Patel who scored a mighty 72 runs, followed by skipper Praveen Amre who made 42 runs. Piyush Soneji scored 39 runs. The others who contributed well for AI were Sairaj Bahutule who scored 34 runs and Harvinder Singh Sodhi who scored 24 runs. Sandeep Sharma bowled well to claim four wickets for 30 runs.

In reply, ONGC XI batted well and Sandeep Sharma scored a fine century at 116 runs but completed the 100 runs in 84 deliveries with 13 fours and two sixes. Later, Gagan Khoda also played a superb game to score 71 runs. Tomorrow, ONGC XI will take on Punjab Cricket Club at PCA stadium, SAS Nagar. Brief scores: Air India — 267 all out in 49.3 overs (Niraj Patel 72, Praveen Amre 42, Piyush Soneji 39, Sairaj Bahutule 34, Harvinder Singh Sodhi 24, Sandeep Sharma 4 for 30, Virender Sehwag 2 for 47, Rahul Sanghvi 2 for 51). ONGC XI — 269 runs for five in 47.2 overs (Sandeep Sharma 116, Gagan Khoda 71, Rizwan Shamshad 31 n.o., Mithun Minhas 26 n.o., Sairaj Bahutule 3 for 45).


Jacob visits Chandigarh Football Academy
By Our Sports Reporter

CHANDIGARH, Sept 30 — The UT Administrator, Lieut-Gen JFR Jacob, PVSM (retd), today in the afternoon, paid a surprise visit to the Chandigarh Football Academy and meet the trainees. He was accompanied by the Deputy Commissioner-cum-Director Sports, Mr M. Ramsekhar. Jacob though satisfied with the training schedule asked DC to arrange for a tutor for the weak students so that their studies do not suffer due to extensive sport training schedule.

Jacob was of the opinion that they should be given the facilities of indoor sports like carrom and chess. He later went to kitchen and was pleased to see the standard of cleanliness maintained there. He had lunch with them and also met the dietician, Ms Aarti Suri. He was satisfied with the quality of food served to children.

Selection trials

The Panchkula District Cricket Association affiliated to the Haryana Cricket Association will conduct selection trials for Haryana Inter-District Cricket Tournament for Pataudi trophy at the Manav Kendra ground, near Mansa Devi temple, Sector 4, Panchkula, on October 2 at 8 a.m. According to Mr Sandeep Moudgil, secretary PDCA, Panchkula will play their first match on October 4 against Chandigarh.

Punjab rowing team

The trials to select Punjab rowing team for 21st Junior National Rowing Championship to be held at Bangalore from November 1 to 5 will be conducted at the lake club, Chandigarh, on October 1 at 6.30 a.m. This was disclosed by Mr Prabhjeev Singh, secretary of the Punjab Rowing Association.

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