The University of Calabar Teaching Hospital, UCTH, became the first hospital to successfully carry out
the first open-heart surgery in Calabar and the entire south-south as a whole.
This was revealed in a statement by Prof Ikpeme Ikpeme, Chief Medical Director, CMD of the hospital, who noted that this was possible due to the culmination of two years of hard work, determination, and sacrifice.
In his words, “History was made in our UCTH when the first-ever open heart surgery was performed in our hospital and the patient safely wheeled out to our Intensive Care Unit.”
Providing details, he noted that, “She had received a Mitral valve replacement following about six and a half hours of surgery. This has been the culmination of two years of hard work, determination, sacrifice, vision and focus at different levels of our hospital. And we must offer sincere gratitude to God and all who worked to make this happen.”
“It is the guiding principle of this management to work quietly to achieve the vision and mission of our hospital and reposition her appropriately in the comity of tertiary health institutions in Nigeria. We have driven this agenda by focusing steadily on the 3R mantra and refusing to be distracted. We must appreciate all staff who made this happen openly,” he noted.
The term “open heart surgery” means that the patient is connected to a heart-lung bypass machine, or bypass pump during surgery.
During this period, the heart is stopped while the patient is connected to this machine.
Therefore, this machine does the work of the heart and lungs while the heart is stopped for the surgery.