Expansion plan: Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam at the new building construction project site while visiting Hospital Raja Permaisuri Bainun in Ipoh. — Bernama
IPOH: The Health Ministry will expand the usage of acupuncture-assisted anaesthesia (AAA) to other hospitals after its successful introduction at the Raja Permaisuri Bainun Hospital here.
Minister Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam said the method, known also as AAA, would not replace conventional anaesthetics but would be introduced at the Kuala Lumpur Hospital, Putrajaya Hospital and Selayang Hospital.
He said AAA was first practised at the hospital here after a visit by ministry director-general Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah to the Shugang University in Shanghai in 2012.
“There have been 22 surgeries performed here where the doctors used AAA.
“We have also trained doctors on AAA procedures,” he told journalists after visiting the hospital yesterday.
“It’s another alternative to the conventional method and one that we will be promoting to patients,” he added.
Dr Subramaniam said AAA had its advantages over conventional methods.
“It is cost-efficient.
“Patients would be awake and alert during surgery but the pain sensation is blunted and motor functions are preserved with less drugs being used,” he said.
“Patients can also go home after surgery, lessening the need to stay at the hospital,” he added.
Dr Subramaniam said hospitals would not force patients to use AAA.
“There will be counselling first to see whether the patient can accept it,” he said.
The first thyroid surgery using AAA was performed by Dr Noor Hisham here, assisted by consultant surgeon Dr Yan Yang Wai, while the acupuncture was performed by the hospital’s anaesthetic department head Dr Kavita M. Bhojwani.
Dr Kavita said AAA could be applied to only certain types of procedures.
“The method is suitable for neurosurgery cases like craniotomy and cranioplasty and general surgery like removing breast lumps, lipomas, chemoports and inguinal hernia,” she said.
by IVAN LOH.