UAE-Based Imam Receives Life-Saving Surgery thanks to Swift Diagnosis at Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi
More options are available for lung cancer treatment than ever before, say experts at Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi, but effective treatment relies on early diagnosis through screening.
Doctors have long advised high-risk patients, such as smokers and people with a family history of cancer, on the importance of early screening. However, there is a growing body of evidence that suggests that early screening can also be beneficial for patients who do not smoke.
Given the number of environmental factors that can cause lung cancer – including exposure to second-hand smoke, occupational carcinogen exposure, and outdoor pollution – early diagnosis can be crucial in ensuring an effective treatment program.
Dr. Jeffrey Chapman, Chair of the Respiratory Institute at Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi, explained: “The philosophy behind screening for lung cancer is to reduce the number of people who die from the disease by detecting it early on, when it is easier to treat. Ideally, screening is done before the disease has advanced enough to cause symptoms. This is where patient awareness is important, because many people wait until they have symptoms, when the cancer has already developed.”
Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi offers a range of non-invasive tools to help detect cancer early. Electromagnetic navigation (EMN) is an innovative technology that uses a GPS on a bronchoscope to seek out any abnormalities. The software provides physicians with navigation views of the lungs via a merged CT image so that the problem areas can be directly targeted, and nodules resected.
Abdullah bin Mubarak Baata is one patient whose prognosis was significantly improved by early diagnosis. A retired Imam living in Baniyas, Abu Dhabi, he was diagnosed by a multidisciplinary team at the hospital who identified lung opacity in his diagnostic tests as being high risk.
Lung opacity shows as a ground glass lesion (GGL); a cloudy area on scans or radiological images which represents a decrease in the ratio of gas to soft tissue in the lung. In Abdullah’s case, this tumor was highly suspicious of early stage cancer and required video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery (VATS).
Dr. Redha Souilamas, Chair of the Thoracic Surgery Department at Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi, Chairman of the Thoracic Tumour Board and President of the Thoracic Council of the Emirates Respiratory Society, who led the team and conducted the minimally invasive surgery, said: “In cancer cases, time is very valuable. A patient needs to be treated without delay once a diagnosis is made. Increasingly, we are able to offer a broad spectrum of oncology treatments that help to address the immediate issue of the cancer and help patients on their path to recovery.”
“After only two days I am able to sit comfortably and talk to my wife. It only hurts a little if I cough, but apart from that I feel very good. Dr. Redha, the team of doctors, nurses and the hospital were all excellent. I am very grateful that the doctors were able to detect my cancer and treat me so capably,” said Abdullah.
Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi’s cancer services include comprehensive imaging for cancer diagnoses, and hybrid minimally invasive thoracic surgery for treatment. In certain cases, the hospital complements its advanced surgical offerings with chemotherapy.
In April 2019, the hospital broke ground on a state-of-the-art oncology center, aiming to bring an integrated and transformative approach to diagnosing and treating cancer to the UAE.
Patients who wish to book an appointment at Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi can visit: https://www.clevelandclinicabudhabi.ae/en/patients-and-visitors/forms-and-documents/pages/request-an-appointment.aspx.