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Overcoming the Fear of Health Check-ups: Tips for the Anxious Patient

29/12/2023

For many individuals, the thought of health check-ups can evoke anxiety and apprehension. Overcoming this fear is crucial for maintaining good health and ensuring timely medical care. Here are some effective tips for anxious patients to navigate and overcome their fear of health check-ups: Acknowledge Your Feelings: Recognize and accept your feelings of anxiety about health check-ups. It's normal to feel nervous, but understanding these emotions is the first step toward managing them effectively. Communicate with Healthcare Providers: Openly discuss your fears and concerns with your healthcare provider. Building a trusting relationship and understanding the procedures involved can alleviate anxiety. Ask questions and seek clarification to alleviate uncertainties. Gradual Exposure: If fear stems from specific aspects of check-ups, such as blood tests or physical exams, consider a step-by-step approach. Start with small exposures, like visiting the doctor's office without an exam, to gradually acclimate yourself to the environment. Relaxation Techniques: Practice relaxation techniques such as deep breathing, mindfulness, or meditation before and during the check-up. These methods can help calm nerves and reduce anxiety levels. Seek Support: Bring a supportive friend or family member to accompany you during the check-up. Having someone familiar by your side can provide comfort and emotional support. Distraction Techniques: Engage in activities that distract your mind during the check-up, such as listening to music, focusing on your breathing, or bringing along a book or magazine to occupy your thoughts. Visualization: Visualize a positive outcome and focus on the benefits of the check-up. Remind yourself that it's a proactive step toward maintaining your health and well-being. Preparation and Information: Knowing what to expect during the check-up can reduce anxiety. Research the procedures or tests beforehand and understand the rationale behind them to feel more in control. Reward Yourself: Plan a small reward or treat for yourself after the check-up as a positive reinforcement for overcoming your anxiety. Seek Professional Help: If anxiety about health check-ups significantly impacts your daily life, consider seeking help from a mental health professional. Therapists or counselors can offer strategies to manage anxiety specific to healthcare settings. Positive Reinforcement: Focus on past experiences where check-ups went smoothly or led to positive outcomes. Remind yourself of these instances to build confidence in facing future appointments. Remember, overcoming the fear of health check-ups is a gradual process. It's essential to be patient with yourself and take small steps towards managing anxiety. With time, practice, and employing these coping strategies, you can gradually reduce anxiety associated with health check-ups and prioritize your health with more ease. *Image by fernando zhiminaicela from Pixabay

The Financial Benefits of Health Check-ups

09/11/2023

Health check-ups are not only essential for your overall well-being but can also prove to be a smart financial decision. Many people often perceive healthcare costs as an expense, but in reality, investing in regular health check-ups can save you a significant amount of money in the long run. Let's delve into some of the financial benefits of health check-ups and how they contribute to long-term cost savings. Early Disease Detection: Health check-ups are designed to identify health issues in their early stages. Detecting a condition at an early stage often means simpler and more cost-effective treatments. For instance, discovering high blood pressure early through routine check-ups can lead to lifestyle changes and medication, which is far less expensive than treating the consequences of uncontrolled hypertension like heart attacks or strokes. Prevention is Cheaper than Cure: Preventive care, which includes vaccinations, screenings, and health check-ups, is less expensive than dealing with a full-blown illness or chronic condition. For example, vaccinations are a cost-effective way to prevent serious diseases such as flu, hepatitis, and certain types of cancer. Reduced Emergency Room Visits: Neglecting regular health check-ups can result in unexpected, costly visits to the emergency room when health conditions worsen. These emergency visits can be avoided through regular preventive care, saving you from expensive medical bills. Lower Medication Costs: Health check-ups can help monitor chronic conditions like diabetes and high cholesterol. By managing these conditions effectively, you can reduce the need for costly medications or complications related to uncontrolled illnesses. Lower Insurance Premiums: Some health insurance plans offer discounts or incentives for policyholders who actively engage in preventive care, including routine check-ups. By taking advantage of these benefits, you can lower your overall healthcare costs. Decreased Productivity Loss: Falling seriously ill can result in extended periods of missed work, which can have a direct impact on your income. Regular health check-ups can help you maintain good health, reducing the likelihood of major illnesses that can lead to significant productivity losses. Avoiding Expensive Surgeries: Detecting and managing health issues early can often prevent the need for expensive surgical procedures. For example, identifying and treating gallstones early can prevent the need for costly gallbladder removal surgery. Peace of Mind: Regular health check-ups can provide peace of mind. Knowing that you are in good health and receiving reassurance from your healthcare provider can reduce stress and anxiety, which can have financial benefits in terms of improved mental well-being. In conclusion, the financial benefits of health check-ups cannot be overstated. By investing in preventive care, you not only protect your health but also your financial stability. The old saying, "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure," certainly applies when it comes to healthcare. Taking proactive measures through regular health check-ups is a small price to pay for the substantial cost savings and the priceless gift of good health and peace of mind. So, make sure to schedule your next health check-up, not just as an expense, but as a smart financial move that will benefit you in the long run. To find out more about the health check-up services we offer, visit our check-up center. *Photo by Pavel Danilyuk via Pexels

Heart Bypass Surgery: Restoring the Rhythm of Life

01/11/2023

The human heart, a relentless muscle responsible for pumping life-giving blood throughout the body, occasionally faces challenges that disrupt its vital work. Coronary artery disease (CAD) is one such challenge, where the arteries supplying the heart muscle become clogged with plaque, reducing blood flow and oxygen delivery. In these cases, heart bypass surgery, also known as coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG), emerges as a life-saving solution. Understanding Heart Bypass Surgery Heart bypass surgery is a surgical procedure designed to create new pathways for blood to flow to the heart muscle when the existing coronary arteries are significantly blocked or narrowed. These newly created pathways, often referred to as "bypasses," allow blood to circumvent the obstructed areas, restoring essential oxygen and nutrients to the heart muscle. When Is Heart Bypass Surgery Necessary? Coronary artery disease can lead to a variety of symptoms, including chest pain (angina), shortness of breath, and fatigue. While not all cases of CAD require surgery, heart bypass surgery may be considered in the following situations: Multiple Blockages: When multiple coronary arteries are significantly narrowed or blocked, bypass surgery is often the most effective solution. Left Main Coronary Artery Disease: Blockages in the left main coronary artery, which supplies a substantial portion of the heart, can be especially dangerous and may necessitate bypass surgery. Failed Angioplasty: In some cases, angioplasty (a minimally invasive procedure to open narrowed arteries) may not provide a lasting solution, and bypass surgery becomes the preferred option. Emergency Treatment: Bypass surgery is occasionally performed as an emergency intervention during a heart attack when other treatments are ineffective. The Heart Bypass Surgery Procedure Preparation: Before the surgery, the patient is given anesthesia to induce unconsciousness and ensure they feel no pain during the procedure. Incision: The surgeon makes an incision in the chest to access the heart. This can be done through a traditional open-chest incision or a minimally invasive approach, depending on the patient's condition and the surgeon's preference. Harvesting Blood Vessels: In most cases, blood vessels, typically the saphenous vein from the leg or the internal mammary artery from the chest wall, are harvested to serve as the grafts for the bypasses. Grafting: The surgeon then attaches one end of the harvested blood vessels above and below the blocked artery, creating a new path for blood to flow, bypassing the blockage. Completion: Once all necessary bypasses are in place, the heart is restarted, and the patient's chest is closed. Benefits of Heart Bypass Surgery Improved Blood Flow: Bypass surgery restores normal blood flow to the heart muscle, reducing the risk of heart attack and relieving symptoms of angina. Enhanced Quality of Life: Patients often experience a significant improvement in their ability to perform daily activities, leading to a better quality of life. Extended Lifespan: Bypass surgery can prolong the lives of individuals with severe CAD. Lower Risk of Future Heart Problems: By creating new pathways for blood flow, bypass surgery can prevent the progression of coronary artery disease. Risks and Complications While heart bypass surgery is generally safe and effective, like any surgical procedure, it carries some risks, including infection, bleeding, and complications related to anesthesia. There's also a potential for graft blockage over time, requiring further intervention. Recovery and Follow-Up Recovery from heart bypass surgery varies depending on the patient and the surgical approach used. However, most individuals can expect to spend a few days in the hospital, with a total recovery period ranging from several weeks to a few months. Rehabilitation typically involves cardiac rehabilitation, a program designed to help patients regain their strength, improve their heart health, and reduce the risk of future cardiac events. Final Thoughts Heart bypass surgery stands as a remarkable testament to the advancements in modern medicine. It offers a path to renewed health for those battling coronary artery disease, allowing them to regain control of their lives and live free from the constant threat of heart-related issues. As technology and medical knowledge continue to advance, heart bypass surgery remains a shining example of how medical science can mend even the most vital parts of our bodies, helping individuals reclaim the rhythm of their lives and look forward to a healthier, heartier future. For more information, visit our Cardiology and Cardiac Surgery page. *Image by Mohamed Hassan from Pixabay

Coronary Angioplasty: Navigating the Path to Heart Health

30/10/2023

The human heart, a miraculous organ, pumps tirelessly, supplying oxygen and nutrients throughout the body. But like any intricate machinery, it sometimes needs a little maintenance. When the arteries that supply the heart muscle become clogged or narrowed due to a condition called coronary artery disease (CAD), the heart's health is at risk. This is where coronary angioplasty, a life-saving medical procedure, comes into play. Understanding Coronary Angioplasty Coronary angioplasty, also known as percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI), is a minimally invasive procedure designed to alleviate blockages in the coronary arteries, the blood vessels that supply oxygen-rich blood to the heart. These blockages are often the result of the accumulation of fatty deposits called plaque, leading to a condition known as atherosclerosis. During coronary angioplasty, a cardiologist inserts a thin, flexible catheter with a deflated balloon at its tip into the affected artery, usually through the groin or wrist. Once the catheter is in place, the balloon is inflated, compressing the plaque against the artery's walls, thereby widening the vessel's diameter and restoring blood flow to the heart. The Role of Stents In many cases, coronary angioplasty is complemented by the placement of a stent. A stent is a small, mesh-like tube made of metal or fabric. It is inserted into the artery during the angioplasty procedure and remains in place permanently. Stents provide structural support to the artery, preventing it from re-narrowing after the balloon is deflated and removed. Stents can be bare metal or coated with medication (drug-eluting stents) to reduce the risk of reblockage. The Procedure Preparation: Before the procedure, the patient is typically given a mild sedative to help them relax. The surgical team thoroughly cleans and sterilizes the access site, which is often in the groin or wrist. Local Anesthesia: Local anesthesia is applied to numb the access area, reducing discomfort during the procedure. Catheter Insertion: A catheter is inserted through the access site and carefully guided through the arterial system to reach the coronary arteries. Angiography: A contrast dye is injected through the catheter to make the coronary arteries visible on an X-ray monitor. This allows the cardiologist to identify the location and severity of blockages. Balloon Inflation: The balloon at the catheter's tip is inflated to compress the plaque against the artery walls, effectively widening the artery. Stent Placement: If necessary, a stent is placed in the treated area to maintain the artery's patency. Drug-eluting stents release medication over time to prevent reblockage. Balloon Deflation and Removal: The balloon is deflated, and the catheter is carefully withdrawn. Post-Procedure Observation: After the procedure, patients are monitored to ensure there are no complications. They may need to stay in the hospital for a short period or can often return home the same day. Benefits of Coronary Angioplasty Swift Recovery: Coronary angioplasty is a minimally invasive procedure, resulting in a faster recovery time compared to traditional open-heart surgery. Improved Blood Flow: By opening narrowed or blocked arteries, angioplasty enhances blood flow to the heart muscle, reducing the risk of a heart attack. Symptom Relief: Patients often experience immediate relief from symptoms like chest pain (angina) and shortness of breath. Enhanced Quality of Life: Restoring normal blood flow to the heart can significantly improve a patient's overall quality of life. Risks and Complications While coronary angioplasty is generally considered safe and effective, there are potential risks and complications, including bleeding or infection at the access site, blood vessel damage, or an allergic reaction to the contrast dye. In rare cases, the procedure may lead to a heart attack, stroke, or the need for emergency bypass surgery. Recovery and Follow-Up After coronary angioplasty, patients are advised to make heart-healthy lifestyle changes, including dietary modifications, regular exercise, and medication adherence. Follow-up appointments with a cardiologist are essential to monitor the stent's function and overall heart health. Final Thoughts Coronary angioplasty is a remarkable medical procedure that has saved countless lives by restoring blood flow to the heart and alleviating the symptoms of CAD. It exemplifies the advancements in modern medicine, providing a minimally invasive solution to a condition that was once treated primarily through open-heart surgery. As technology and medical knowledge continue to progress, coronary angioplasty remains a beacon of hope for those dealing with coronary artery disease, promising a brighter and healthier future for their hearts and their lives. For more information, visit our Cardiology and Cardiac Surgery page. *Image by Mohamed Hassan from Pixabay

When to Seek a Second Medical Opinion: Red Flags and Scenarios

06/10/2023

When it comes to your health, decisions about diagnoses and treatment plans are often life-altering. While most healthcare professionals are dedicated to providing the best care possible, the complexity of medicine means that misdiagnoses or suboptimal treatment options can occur. This is where seeking a second medical opinion becomes crucial, and understanding when to do so can make all the difference. Complex or Rare Diagnoses One of the most compelling reasons to consider a second medical opinion is when faced with a complex or rare medical condition. These conditions often challenge even the most experienced healthcare providers, and consulting with multiple experts can lead to a more accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment plan. For instance, a rare genetic disorder or an unusual presentation of a common condition might warrant seeking additional perspectives. Serious or Life-Threatening Diagnoses When the stakes are high, such as in cases of serious or life-threatening illnesses like cancer, heart disease, or neurological disorders, it's prudent to explore all available options. Seeking a second opinion can provide peace of mind and ensure that the recommended treatment aligns with the best available evidence and expert consensus. Dissatisfaction with Current Treatment Plans If you find yourself feeling uneasy about your current treatment plan or you believe it isn't delivering the expected results, it's a valid reason to seek a second medical opinion. This is particularly important in chronic conditions where the treatment may need adjustments over time. A fresh perspective can uncover alternative approaches that may be more effective or better suited to your individual needs. Questions About Surgery Decisions regarding surgery should be approached with caution. If surgery is recommended, especially for complex or invasive procedures, seeking a second opinion is advisable. This can confirm the necessity of the surgery, explore less invasive options, or ensure that you are fully informed about the risks and benefits. Medication Side Effects or Allergic Reactions Experiencing unexpected or severe side effects from prescribed medications can be distressing. In such cases, it's essential to consult with another healthcare provider to evaluate whether the medication is appropriate for you or if there are safer alternatives. Persistent or Worsening Symptoms When your symptoms persist or worsen despite treatment, it could indicate an underlying issue that hasn't been addressed. Seeking a second opinion can help uncover the root cause of your health problems and prevent unnecessary suffering or complications. Complex Treatment Plans In cases where treatment plans involve multiple medications, therapies, or lifestyle changes, seeking a second opinion can provide clarity. It can help you ensure that the treatment regimen is well-coordinated, evidence-based, and aligns with your overall health goals. Concerns About Misdiagnosis If you suspect that you may have been misdiagnosed or have received conflicting opinions from different healthcare providers, seeking a second medical opinion is not only a right but a responsibility to your health. Misdiagnoses can lead to delayed or incorrect treatments, potentially causing harm. Peace of Mind and Confidence Sometimes, the decision to seek a second opinion is not based on specific concerns but rather a desire for peace of mind. Healthcare decisions are deeply personal, and you have the right to feel confident and fully informed about your treatment choices. A second opinion can offer reassurance and confidence in your healthcare journey. Final Thoughts In conclusion, knowing when to seek a second medical opinion is as crucial as the decision itself. It is not a sign of mistrust in your healthcare provider but rather a proactive approach to ensure the best possible care and outcomes. Ultimately, your health and well-being are paramount, and seeking additional perspectives when facing significant medical decisions can lead to more accurate diagnoses and more effective treatments, ultimately improving your quality of life. Here at France Surgery, we can provide you with a second medical opinion in France from just €450. If you’ve recently had a diagnosis and you’ve got some doubts, contact us now to benefit from a second medical opinion. *Image by valelopardo from Pixabay

Telehealth vs. Traditional Care: Weighing the Pros and Cons

31/08/2023

Telehealth vs. Traditional Care: Weighing the Pros and Cons The evolution of healthcare has brought forth new models of medical delivery, with telehealth emerging as a significant player alongside traditional in-person care. As patients gain access to a wider range of healthcare options, the debate between telehealth and traditional care continues to gain prominence. In this exploration, we will delve into the pros and cons of telehealth and traditional care, helping patients make informed decisions about their healthcare choices. Pros of Telehealth Accessibility and Convenience Telehealth eliminates geographical barriers, enabling patients to access medical care regardless of their location. Virtual appointments eliminate the need for travel, making healthcare more convenient for those with mobility limitations or residing in remote areas. Time and Cost Savings Virtual consultations save time by eliminating travel, waiting rooms, and potential delays. Moreover, telehealth is often more cost-effective for both patients and healthcare systems, reducing transportation expenses and operational overhead. Expanded Access to Specialists Telehealth allows patients to consult with specialists who may be located in different cities or countries. This opens the door to expertise that might not be locally available. Continuity of Care Patients can maintain a continuous relationship with their healthcare providers through follow-up telehealth appointments. This consistency can lead to more effective monitoring and improved outcomes for chronic conditions. Reduced Exposure to Contagious Diseases Telehealth gained further significance during the COVID-19 pandemic, as it enabled patients to seek medical advice without the risk of exposure to contagious diseases. Cons of Telehealth Limited Physical Examination While telehealth offers visual cues, it cannot replace a thorough physical examination that can be conducted during an in-person visit. Certain conditions may require hands-on assessments that telehealth cannot provide. Technical Barriers Not all patients have access to the necessary technology or a stable internet connection, limiting their ability to engage in virtual appointments. Lack of Personal Interaction Building a rapport with a healthcare provider is often easier in person. The absence of face-to-face interaction can impact the depth of doctor-patient relationships. Scope of Treatment Some medical interventions, such as surgeries or complex procedures, require in-person care that cannot be replicated through telehealth. Data Privacy Concerns Transmitting sensitive medical information through digital platforms raises concerns about data security and patient privacy. Choosing the Right Approach The choice between telehealth and traditional care depends on various factors, including the nature of the medical concern, patient preferences, and available resources. For routine check-ups, minor ailments, and follow-up consultations, telehealth can offer a convenient and efficient solution. However, for more complex medical issues, emergencies, or cases that require physical examinations, traditional in-person care might be the preferred choice. Final Thoughts Telehealth and traditional care each have their own set of advantages and limitations. The decision ultimately hinges on the patient's healthcare needs, their access to technology, and their comfort level with remote medical consultations. The future of healthcare might likely see a blend of both approaches, as patients and healthcare providers collaborate to offer the best care possible, combining the convenience of telehealth with the personalized touch of traditional care. *Photo by Tima Miroshnichenko via Pexels

Beyond Medical Tourism: Unveiling France’s Cultural Gems

18/08/2023

Medical tourism offers more than just healthcare; it's an avenue to explore the world's diverse cultures while prioritizing your well-being. And where better to do that than France. Medical tourism seamlessly blends healthcare and travel, presenting a unique chance to experience different cultures while undergoing medical treatments. This blog will showcase some of the rich culture that France has to offer. 1. Festivals and Celebrations France is renowned for its lively festivals and celebrations, each offering a distinct glimpse into the country's heritage. Experience the grandeur of Bastille Day, France's National Day, with spectacular fireworks, parades, and cultural events. Alternatively, immerse yourself in the magic of the Cannes Film Festival, where the world's cinema luminaries gather, providing a blend of glamor and artistry. 2. Historical Landmarks France is a historical treasure trove, boasting iconic landmarks that narrate centuries of captivating stories. While recovering from your medical procedure, gaze in awe at the magnificent Eiffel Tower or wander through the corridors of the Palace of Versailles, once home to French royalty. 3. Culinary Adventures Indulge in France's exquisite culinary culture as you savor gourmet delights and explore local markets. Delight in the delicate flavors of a croissant and café au lait for breakfast, and embark on a culinary journey by savoring escargot, coq au vin, and crème brûlée. Engage in wine tastings in the famed Bordeaux region, where the art of winemaking is interwoven with French heritage. 4. Arts and Crafts France's rich artistic legacy is celebrated worldwide. Discover renowned museums like the Louvre, home to thousands of art masterpieces, including the enigmatic Mona Lisa. Participate in workshops to learn traditional crafts such as pottery in Provence or impressionist painting in the picturesque countryside. 5. Local Traditions and Customs Participate in authentic French customs, like enjoying a leisurely picnic along the Seine or witnessing the charm of a local village market. Immerse yourself in the romance of Paris with a serene boat ride on the river or stroll through Montmartre's artistic enclave. 6. Eco-Tourism Adventures France's diverse landscapes offer opportunities for eco-tourism. Explore the stunning beauty of the French Riviera or the tranquility of the French Alps. Engage in hiking, skiing, or simply revel in the natural splendor that surrounds you. Final Thoughts Medical tourism is a pathway to cultural immersion, allowing you to explore France's abundant heritage while focusing on your well-being. Whether you're captivated by festivals, captivated by history, enchanted by cuisine, or enamored with arts and crafts, France's cultural gems will undoubtedly enrich your medical travel experience. By embracing the culture of France, you'll create enduring memories that enhance your recovery journey and offer a profound appreciation for the world's diverse cultures. *Image by Marcos Abreu via Pexels

Your Ultimate Medical Tourism Checklist

10/08/2023

Embarking on a medical tourism journey is a unique experience that combines healthcare with travel and cultural exploration. To ensure a seamless and successful trip, careful planning and consideration of various factors are essential. This comprehensive checklist covers everything a medical tourist needs to consider before, during, and after their journey, ensuring a safe and rewarding experience. Pre-Travel Preparations Medical Assessment: Consult your primary healthcare provider to determine if you are medically fit for travel and the intended medical procedure. Research: Thoroughly research your medical condition, treatment options, and potential destinations to make informed decisions. Medical Records: Gather all relevant medical records, including test results, prescriptions, and treatment history, to share with the chosen medical facility. Consultation with Specialists: Schedule online or telehealth consultations with potential medical providers to discuss your case, treatment options, and expectations. Travel Arrangements: Book flights, accommodations, and transportation well in advance, considering factors such as proximity to the medical facility and post-treatment recovery needs. Selecting the Right Medical Facility Accreditation and Certification: Ensure that the medical facility is accredited by recognized organizations and adheres to international healthcare standards. Doctor Qualifications: Research the credentials and expertise of the medical professionals who will be treating you. Reviews and Testimonials: Read reviews and testimonials from previous patients to gauge the quality of care and the facility's reputation. Treatment Costs: Obtain a detailed breakdown of treatment costs, including medical procedure, hospital stay, medications, and post-treatment care. Communication: Confirm that the medical staff can communicate effectively in your language or provide translation services. Understanding Local Laws and Regulations Visa Requirements: Check the visa requirements for your chosen destination and ensure you have the necessary travel documents. Health Insurance: Review your health insurance policy to understand coverage for medical treatment abroad and consider purchasing additional medical travel insurance. Legal and Ethical Considerations: Familiarize yourself with local medical laws, regulations, and ethical practices to ensure a safe and compliant experience. Consent and Privacy: Understand the facility's policies regarding informed consent, medical privacy, and data protection. During Your Medical Journey Arrival Preparation: Arrive a few days before the scheduled procedure to acclimate to the new environment and time zone. Facility Visit: Prior to the procedure, visit the medical facility in person to meet the medical team, tour the facility, and address any concerns. Communication: Maintain open communication with the medical staff, asking questions and seeking clarification as needed. Cultural Sensitivity: Respect local customs and traditions, as well as medical staff's practices, to foster a positive and respectful relationship. Post-Treatment Care Recovery Period: Allow sufficient time for post-treatment recovery before traveling back home. Follow-Up Appointments: Schedule follow-up appointments with your local healthcare provider to monitor your recovery and address any concerns. Medications and Instructions: Follow prescribed medication and post-treatment care instructions meticulously. Contact Information: Keep contact information for the medical facility and treating doctors for any post-treatment queries or emergencies. Share Feedback: Share your experience and feedback with the medical facility to contribute to their ongoing improvement and help future patients. Final Thoughts Embarking on a medical tourism journey requires thorough planning and consideration of various factors. By following this ultimate medical tourism checklist, you can ensure a safe, rewarding, and transformative experience that blends healthcare, cultural exploration, and personal growth. Remember, informed decisions and thorough preparation are the keys to making the most of your medical tourism adventure. Of course, you could save yourself the time and hassle associated with many of the above points by partnering with a reputable company like France Surgery. Contact us today to find out more. *Image courtesy of Photo by Porapak Apichodilok via Pexels

A culinary adventure: Exploring healthy international cuisine during medical travel

03/08/2023

Medical tourism has become a global phenomenon, with millions of people traveling abroad each year to seek quality medical treatments at affordable prices. While the primary goal of medical travel is to receive top-notch healthcare, it also offers an incredible opportunity to explore the rich tapestry of global cultures. One aspect that often goes unnoticed but plays a vital role in a patient's recovery journey is the local cuisine. In this blog, we will take you on a culinary adventure, exploring healthy international cuisine during medical travel. The Healing Power of Food As the saying goes, "You are what you eat." Nutrition plays a crucial role in the healing process, and it is even more critical when recovering from medical procedures or treatments. Many medical tourism destinations are known for their healthy and flavorful cuisine, which can enhance the recovery experience. French Gastronomy: A Culinary Extravaganza No exploration of international cuisine would be complete without delving into the world-renowned French gastronomy. France is not only famous for its art, fashion, and history but also for its exceptional culinary heritage. For medical travelers seeking both world-class healthcare and a gourmet experience, France stands out as a dream destination. Mediterranean Delights Mediterranean cuisine is revered for its health benefits and exquisite flavors. Countries like Greece, Italy, and Spain offer a bounty of dishes rich in fresh fruits, vegetables, olive oil, and lean proteins. Their diets are known to promote heart health and reduce inflammation, making them ideal for patients recovering from heart-related issues or surgeries. Asian Wonders Asia is a treasure trove of diverse and nutritious culinary traditions. Japanese cuisine, for example, with its emphasis on fish, vegetables, and rice, provides essential nutrients and is low in saturated fats. The healing properties of certain Japanese ingredients, such as miso and green tea, have been widely acknowledged. Ayurvedic Wisdom in India India, with its ancient practice of Ayurveda, has much to offer in terms of holistic healing through food. Ayurvedic principles emphasize the balance of mind, body, and spirit. Traditional Indian dishes prepared with aromatic herbs and spices like turmeric, ginger, and cumin are believed to have therapeutic properties that aid digestion and support the immune system. Thai Serenity Thai cuisine not only tantalizes the taste buds but also offers a range of health benefits. With its combination of fresh herbs, spices, and exotic fruits, Thai food is packed with antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties. Additionally, dishes like Tom Yum soup are believed to promote detoxification and boost the body's healing mechanisms. Wholesome Middle Eastern Fare The Middle Eastern diet is centered around whole grains, legumes, nuts, and seeds. Dishes like hummus, falafel, and tabbouleh are not only delicious but also rich in essential nutrients. These foods can help patients recover from various medical procedures and maintain a balanced diet during their healing process. Final thoughts Medical tourism is an adventure that extends beyond the hospital walls. Exploring healthy international cuisine during medical travel adds an exciting dimension to the entire experience. Embracing the local foods of medical tourism destinations not only nourishes the body but also the soul, fostering a deeper connection with the culture and people. As you embark on your medical travel journey, remember to savor the delightful flavors and nourishing dishes that each country has to offer. By incorporating healthy and nutritious cuisine into your recovery plan, you can enhance the healing process and create lasting memories of your time abroad. Bon appétit and safe travels! *Image by -Rita-

Medical tourism industry set to hit $121bn by 2032

21/07/2023

The medical tourism industry was worth more than $70bn before the global COVID-19 pandemic struck. Then, virtually overnight, with borders closed and international travel halted, the medical tourism industry experienced a decline. However, with lockdowns in place and movement severely restricted, many people were able to save more money than they usually do. As a result, once lockdowns lifted and travel resumed, those individuals had the necessary funds to pay for treatment abroad. Now, new research shows the medical tourism industry is set to boom once more. According to the report by Market Research Future (MRFR), the medical tourism market was valued at $17.35bn in 2021 and is projected to grow from $21.42bn in 2022 to $121.8bn by 2032, exhibiting a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 21.2% during the forecast period (2022 - 2032). The report states that the high cost of healthcare in developed countries will be a major driver of the medical tourism industry’s growth, as more people look for affordable treatments and procedures abroad. Furthermore, with advancements in equipment, procedures, telemedicine and other types of distance healthcare, high-quality medical care is accessible to people all over the world. Finally, the report also notes that the market for medical tourism in Europe is projected to expand at a faster rate than any other region. This is because of factors including “the growing popularity of medical tourism, the ever-increasing cost of healthcare, and the rising prevalence of conditions like osteoarthritis and degenerative disc disease.” Request a sample of the MRFR report here: www.marketresearchfuture.com/sample_request/1975 Considering a medical procedure abroad? At France Surgery, we can take care of everything for you from start to finish, leaving you with total peace of mind. Contact us today for more information.

Patient-Centered Care: The French Medical Experience

23/05/2023

In France, patient-centered care lies at the core of the healthcare system, emphasizing personalized attention, comprehensive consultations, and ongoing support. The French medical experience is characterized by strong doctor-patient relationships, thorough care provision, and patient feedback mechanisms that contribute to a patient-centric approach. Establishing strong doctor-patient relationships One of the cornerstones of the French medical experience is the establishment of strong doctor-patient relationships. Trust, empathy, and effective communication between doctors and patients are emphasized, creating a foundation of mutual understanding and collaboration.  Doctors in France take the time to listen to patients, ensuring they have a comprehensive understanding of their medical history, concerns, and goals. This collaborative approach to decision-making takes into account patients' preferences and values, fostering a sense of shared decision-making and empowering patients in their healthcare journey. Continuity of care is highly valued, with patients often seeing the same doctor over time, allowing for a deeper understanding of their individual needs. Thorough consultations and comprehensive care In France, thorough consultations are the norm, with doctors dedicating ample time to each patient. These consultations go beyond addressing immediate concerns, allowing doctors to delve into patients' medical histories and perform comprehensive assessments. The goal is to provide holistic care that encompasses preventive measures, early detection of conditions, and tailored treatment plans. By involving specialists and multidisciplinary teams, France ensures that patients receive well-rounded and integrated care. Coordinated and follow-up care France places great importance on coordinated care to ensure seamless and integrated services. Healthcare professionals work collaboratively to provide coordinated care, ensuring that patients receive appropriate referrals, treatments, and ongoing support. The continuity of care is reinforced through regular follow-up appointments and post-treatment monitoring, allowing doctors to track patients' progress and make any necessary adjustments to their care plans. General practitioners often serve as the coordinators of care, overseeing the overall treatment journey and ensuring that all aspects of patients' healthcare needs are addressed. Patient education and empowerment Patient education is a fundamental aspect of the French medical experience. Patients are provided with the knowledge and tools to actively participate in their healthcare decisions. Through educational materials, workshops, and digital platforms, individuals are empowered to make informed choices about their health. France promotes self-management and healthy lifestyle practices, recognizing the importance of patient engagement in achieving optimal outcomes. Patient feedback mechanisms and continuous improvement France places value on gathering patient feedback to continually improve the quality of care and enhance the patient experience. Patient satisfaction surveys, patient advisory committees, and online platforms for reviews and ratings are among the mechanisms in place to gather insights and perspectives. This feedback is used to drive quality improvement efforts and shape healthcare delivery to better meet patients' needs. By actively involving patients in shaping the healthcare system, France ensures a patient-centric approach that evolves with changing expectations and requirements. Cultural sensitivity and inclusivity France is committed to cultural sensitivity and inclusivity in healthcare. Efforts are made to accommodate diverse backgrounds, languages, and cultural practices to ensure equitable access to care. Initiatives aimed at reducing healthcare disparities and improving health outcomes among marginalized communities are prioritized. By fostering an inclusive environment, France strives to provide healthcare that respects and embraces individual differences. Promoting patient rights and privacy France has a strong legal framework in place to safeguard patient rights, privacy, and confidentiality. Informed consent procedures ensure that patients have a clear understanding of their treatments and procedures, and patients have control over their medical information. Patient advocacy groups play an important role in safeguarding patient rights and fostering transparency in healthcare, advocating for the protection of patient privacy and ensuring that patients' voices are heard. In summary The French medical experience is characterized by patient-centered care, emphasizing strong doctor-patient relationships, thorough consultations, comprehensive care, patient education, and continuous improvement. The commitment to prioritizing patients' needs and empowering them to actively participate in their healthcare journey contributes to a positive and impactful medical experience in France.  Through collaborative decision-making, personalized attention, and a holistic approach to healthcare, France strives to ensure that patients receive the highest quality of care tailored to their individual needs. By actively incorporating patient feedback, promoting cultural sensitivity, protecting patient rights, and fostering inclusivity, the French healthcare system continues to evolve, setting a standard for patient-centered care worldwide. *image by ian kelsall from Pixabay

Medical tourism vs. health & wellness tourism: Understanding the differences

11/05/2023

Medical tourism and health and wellness tourism are two terms that are often used interchangeably, but they are not one and the same. While both involve traveling to another country for healthcare purposes, there are important differences to note between the two. Primarily, medical tourism refers to traveling abroad for medical procedures and treatments that are not available, affordable, or accessible in the home country. These procedures are typically focused on diagnosing and treating specific medical conditions or illnesses, such as heart surgery, cancer treatment, or organ transplants. Medical tourism is often seen as a way for patients to save money on expensive medical procedures, while also receiving high-quality care from qualified professionals. On the other hand, health and wellness tourism is focused on preventative care and promoting overall health and wellbeing. This type of tourism typically involves activities such as spa treatments, yoga retreats, and fitness programs that aim to improve physical, mental, and emotional health. Health and wellness tourism is becoming increasingly popular as people look for ways to take a break from their busy lives and prioritize self-care. While medical tourism and health and wellness tourism may seem like two completely different things, there are some areas where they overlap. For example, some medical tourism destinations also offer health and wellness programs, such as nutrition counseling, stress management, and mindfulness training, to help patients recover and maintain their health after medical procedures. Another area where the two types of tourism intersect is in the use of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM). Many medical tourism destinations offer CAM therapies, such as acupuncture, herbal medicine, and massage therapy, as part of their treatment programs. Similarly, many health and wellness tourism destinations incorporate CAM practices into their programs as well, to provide a more holistic approach to health and wellness. In conclusion, medical tourism and health and wellness tourism are two distinct types of tourism that serve different purposes. Medical tourism is focused on treating specific medical conditions, while health and wellness tourism is focused on promoting overall health and wellbeing. However, there are some areas where the two types of tourism intersect, such as the use of CAM therapies and the incorporation of health and wellness programs into medical tourism destinations. It’s important for travelers to understand the differences between these two types of tourism to ensure they choose the right type of travel experience for their needs. *image credit: Couleur from Pixabay  [Related reading: The benefits of partnering with a reputable company for medical treatment abroad]

The evolution of Medical Tourism: From spa retreats to surgery

13/04/2023

Medical tourism has come a long way since its early days, when it was predominantly a niche industry catering to wealthy clients seeking spa retreats in exotic locations. Today, medical tourism encompasses a wide range of medical procedures, from cosmetic surgery to complex organ transplants, and is a booming global industry estimated to be worth $11.56 billion in 2020. The origins of medical tourism can be traced back to ancient Greece, where pilgrims traveled to temples dedicated to Asclepius, the god of medicine, to seek healing. In modern times, medical tourism began to gain popularity in the 1990s, as patients from developed countries started to seek affordable healthcare options in developing countries like Thailand, India, and Mexico. In its early days, medical tourism was primarily focused on cosmetic surgery, dental procedures, and elective treatments like weight loss surgeries. Patients were attracted to the lower costs of these procedures, as well as the opportunity to combine medical treatment with a vacation or retreat. However, as medical tourism became more mainstream, it began to encompass a wider range of medical procedures, including complex surgeries like heart transplants, liver transplants, and cancer treatments. Patients from developed countries were attracted not only to the lower costs of these treatments, but also to the high-quality medical care provided by experienced and well-trained doctors. Today, medical tourism is a global industry that spans the globe, with patients traveling from all corners of the world to seek medical treatment in countries like France. The industry is expected to continue to grow in the coming years, driven by factors like rising healthcare costs, increased globalization, and advances in medical technology. Despite its many benefits, medical tourism is not without its challenges. Patients who choose to travel abroad for medical treatment must navigate complex legal, logistical, and cultural barriers, and must carefully research the quality and reputation of the medical providers they are considering. [Related reading: The benefits of partnering with a reputable company for medical treatment abroad] Overall, medical tourism has come a long way since its early days as a luxury retreat for the wealthy. Today, it is a global industry that is transforming healthcare, providing patients with affordable, high-quality medical care and driving innovation in the field of medicine. If you'd like to find out more about our own Medical Tourism services, contact us now. *Image by Tesa Robbins from Pixabay 

How medical tourism can save you money on healthcare costs

30/03/2023

Medical tourism has become a popular option for people seeking affordable healthcare, especially those who are uninsured or underinsured. With healthcare costs rising in many countries, medical tourism has emerged as a cost-effective alternative, providing patients with access to high-quality medical procedures (often at a fraction of the cost). One of the main advantages of medical tourism is the savings that patients can enjoy. For instance, a medical procedure that may cost tens of thousands of dollars in the United States can be obtained for a fraction of the cost abroad. This can make a huge difference for patients who may not be able to afford the treatment they need in their home country. Moreover, medical tourism can also provide patients with access to treatments that may not be available or legal in their home country. For example, some stem cell therapies are still illegal or highly regulated in many developed countries, but are available elsewhere. Patients who are seeking these treatments can travel to these countries to receive them, without having to worry about legal repercussions. However, travelling abroad for medical care isn’t something that should be taken lightly. There are a lot of logistics and planning involved, which is why people who are considering this option need to do adequate research. Furthermore, if you have insurance, it is important that you check it covers your proposed treatment abroad before making any definitive plans. [Related reading: The benefits of partnering with a reputable company for medical treatment abroad] Overall, medical tourism can be a great way for patients to access affordable, high-quality medical care. However, patients should carefully consider the risks and benefits before deciding whether to travel abroad for medical treatment. They should research the quality and reputation of the medical providers they are considering, as well as the legal and regulatory framework in the country where they will be receiving treatment. *Image by Stefan Schweihofer from Pixabay 

The benefits of partnering with a reputable company for medical treatment abroad

24/03/2023

When it comes to undergoing a medical procedure abroad, partnering with a reputable company can make all the difference. Said company can help you navigate the complex world of medical tourism, ensuring that you receive high-quality care and that your experience is safe and stress-free.  In this article, we'll explore the benefits of partnering with a reputable company when you want to undergo a medical procedure abroad. Access to high-quality medical facilities and professionals Partnering with a reputable company means that you'll have access to high-quality medical facilities and professionals. They will have partnerships with top medical facilities and professionals, ensuring that you receive the best possible care. They'll also have access to the latest medical technologies and treatments, which may not be available in your home country. Support and assistance throughout the process Undergoing a medical procedure abroad can be a daunting process, but partnering with a reputable company means that you'll have support and assistance throughout the process. The company will provide you with a dedicated point of contact, who will help you with everything from arranging travel and accommodations to scheduling medical appointments. This means that you can focus on your recovery, knowing that all the logistical details are being taken care of. Reduced risk of medical complications Partnering with a reputable medical travel facilitator can also reduce the risk of medical complications. A reputable company will only partner with medical facilities and professionals who meet strict standards for safety and quality. This means that you can be confident that you're receiving the best possible care, reducing the risk of complications and ensuring a smooth recovery process. Cost savings Partnering with a reputable company can also result in cost savings. They will have partnerships with medical facilities and professionals that offer competitive pricing, meaning that you can receive high-quality care at a more affordable price. They may also be able to negotiate discounts on travel and accommodations, further reducing the cost of your medical trip. In conclusion, partnering with a reputable company when you want to undergo a medical procedure abroad offers many benefits, including access to high-quality medical facilities and professionals, support and assistance throughout the process, reduced risk of medical complications, and cost savings. When considering a medical trip abroad, it's important to choose a company with a proven track record of success and a commitment to safety and quality. With the right partner, you can have peace of mind knowing that your medical trip will be a success. *Image by Sam Williams from Pixabay 

A beginner's guide to medical tourism: how to plan your trip and choose the right provider

02/03/2023

Medical tourism can be a great option for those seeking affordable and high-quality healthcare, but it can also be daunting for those who are new to the process. If you're considering medical tourism, it's important to do your research and plan ahead to ensure a safe and successful trip.  Here are some tips for getting started: 1. Determine your healthcare needs Before you start researching medical tourism providers, it's important to have a clear idea of the medical procedures or treatments you require. Consult with your physician to ensure you are a good candidate for traveling abroad for treatment. 2. Research potential destinations and providers  Look into popular medical tourism destinations and the providers that operate there. Consider factors such as the cost of treatment, quality of care, and the reputation of the facility and its doctors. Look for providers who are accredited and have positive patient reviews. [Related reading: Beyond borders: the benefits of having medical treatment abroad] 3. Check your insurance coverage If you have health insurance, check to see if it covers medical treatments abroad. If not, you may need to purchase travel insurance or consider self-insuring for any potential risks. 4. Plan your travel logistics Once you've chosen a provider and destination, you'll need to plan your travel logistics, including transportation, accommodations, and any necessary visas or vaccinations. 5. Prepare for the treatment Before you leave for your medical tourism trip, be sure to prepare yourself for the treatment. Follow any pre-treatment instructions provided by your provider, and pack any necessary medications or supplies. 6. Follow up with post-treatment care After your treatment, it's important to follow up with any post-treatment care instructions provided by your provider. If you experience any complications or have concerns about your recovery, be sure to contact your provider right away. By following these steps, you can help ensure a safe and successful medical tourism trip.  Here at France Surgery, we can take care of many of the aspects mentioned above to ensure your medical procedure here in France is seamless. If you’d like to find out more, contact us today. *Image by Gustavo Fring

Beyond borders: the benefits of having medical treatment abroad

20/02/2023

As hospital waiting lists continue to grow in many countries, the number of people seeking medical treatment abroad has increased in recent times. But aside from getting treatment quicker, there are a number of other benefits associated with having medical treatment abroad, several of which we’ll outline in this article. Quicker access to treatment First and foremost, patients can receive treatment quickly. Waiting lists for certain procedures in developed countries can be months, if not years, long. In contrast, medical facilities in other countries often have shorter waiting times, which means that patients can receive treatment sooner. This can be especially important for procedures that are time-sensitive or for patients who are experiencing significant pain or discomfort. Wider range of treatments available Patients can access treatments and procedures that may not be available in their home country. Medical technology and treatments are constantly evolving, and some countries may not have the latest or most advanced treatments available. By seeking medical treatment abroad, patients may be able to access cutting-edge treatments and procedures that are not available in their home country. Higher quality care Patients often also receive better quality care abroad. Many countries that are popular for medical tourism, including France, have world-class medical facilities that are staffed by highly trained doctors and medical professionals. Patients can expect to receive the same level of care they would receive in their home country, if not better. Combine treatment with a vacation Seeking medical treatment abroad can be an opportunity for patients to combine medical care with a holiday. Many medical facilities in other countries offer packages that include accommodation and sightseeing tours, allowing patients to enjoy a vacation while also receiving medical treatment. This can make the experience of seeking medical treatment more enjoyable and less stressful. Maintain privacy Finally, seeking medical treatment abroad can be a way to maintain privacy and confidentiality. Some patients may prefer to keep their medical procedures and treatments private, and seeking medical treatment abroad can provide an opportunity to do so. Patients can receive treatment without worrying about running into acquaintances or colleagues, which can be a concern in their home country. Overall, there are numerous benefits associated with having medical treatment abroad. However, it is important to do thorough research and consult with a medical professional before deciding to seek medical treatment abroad, as there are also potential risks and drawbacks that should be taken into consideration. Partnering with a reputable organization is paramount. *Image by David Mark from Pixabay 

Regular exercise linked to more heart health benefits among people with stress, anxiety

07/04/2022

People who suffer with stress and anxiety could realise heart health benefits through regular exercise, new research has found. According to the study by res earchers at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, regular physical activity among individuals with depression or anxiety had nearly double the cardiovascular benefit than in people without such diagnoses. The study found that, people who accomplished the recommended amount of physical activity per week – 150 minutes, according to he American College of Cardiology and American Heart Association – were 17 per cent less likely to suffer a major adverse cardiovascular event than those who exercised less. However, of those who achieved the recommended amount of physical activity per week, individuals with anxiety or depression had a 22 per cent risk reduction versus a 10 per cent among those without either condition. The analysis included more than 50,000 patients in the Massachusetts General Brigham Biobank database. Just over 4,000 of the patients analyzed had suffered a major cardiovascular event, like a heart attack, chest pain caused by a blocked artery, or underwent a procedure to open a blocked artery in the heart. Commenting on the study's findings, Michael Emery, MD, who is the co-director of the Sports Cardiology Center at Cleveland Clinic in Ohio, and was not involved in the study, said: “Exercise is medicine both physically and psychologically, and these factors interplay such that when you are more physically healthy your psychological state is more robust, and when you are mentally more healthy your physical state is improved.” *Image by StockSnap from Pixabay

Highly accurate new blood test can detect early-stage lung cancer

10/02/2022

The earlier lung cancer is diagnosed, the greater a patient's chances of survival. Now, a new test has could help with the detection of lung cancer in is early stages. Developed by researchers at Peking University People’s Hospital in China, the novel non-invasive blood test assess levels of lipid biomarkers in patients' plasma samples. While lung cancer screening techniques already exist, they often produce low accuracy results. And considering better treatment options and survival rates are associated with earlier detection, accuracy is key. In contrast, the new test, named Lung Cancer Artificial Intelligence Detector (LCAID), has high accuracy. The study’s lead author, Jun Wang, chief of the Department of Thoracic Surgery at Peking University Peoples Hospital, explained: “The accuracy and high specificity of LCAID might help improve the detection and screening of lung cancer and consequently reduce unnecessary exposure to radiation and invasive diagnostic procedures. Notably, most patients with lung cancer included in this study were at Stage I, and over 90% of them were correctly classified by LCAID.” More information about the LCAID research can be found in Science Translational Medicine. *Image courtesy of Belova59 from Pixabay 

France allows supervised self-tests to be used to obtain Covid health passes

11/11/2021

Since October 15, people in France have not been able to use supervised self-tests to obtain a Covid health pass. But the French government has now suspended this decree, effectively opening the door for supervised self-tests to be used for health pass purposes. Covid tests became payable on October 15 and the government said that unvaccinated people would no longer be allowed to carry out a self-test under the supervision of a health professional in order to obtain a health pass. At the time, the Conseil d’État (Council of State) said “this form of test had only been provided in order to avoid any difficulties with accessing PCR or antigen tests as the health pass was being implemented. “These difficulties did not materialise and there is no risk of them appearing now.” On October 29, the Conseil d’État suspended this decree, reintroducing the possibility of obtaining a health pass through a negative self-administered test. So instead of paying around €25-€30 for a pharmacist or other professional to carry out the procedure, individuals can buy a self-test for around €5. Government information service service-public.fr now says people can acquire a temporary health pass by presenting “proof of a negative PCR, antigen or self-test carried out under the supervision of a health professional within the last 72 hours.” *Image by Bastian Riccardi from Pixabay

Free access to contraception to be extended to more young women in France

09/09/2021

Women in France aged up to 25 years old will get access to free birth control from January 2022 onwards. The initiative is part of the country’s plans to combat young women not taking advantage of contraception for financial reasons. The new measure, which covers the pill, IUD devices and contraceptive implants, reportedly cost the state around 21 million euros ($24.8 million) per year, French Health Minister Olivier Veran said on Thursday. Olivier Véran said those under 25 would not be charged for medical appointments, tests, or other medical procedures related to birth control. “This will cover hormonal contraception, biological tests that goes with it, the prescription of contraception and all care related to this contraception up until the age of 25. "There is a decline in contraception use among some young women and it is mainly for financial reasons," Veran told France 2 television. "It is unbearable that women cannot protect themselves, cannot have access to contraception if they want to make that choice because it is too expensive," he added. At present, the age limit for free access to contraception in France was 18 years. The policy announcement comes as President Emmanuel Macron's government prepares for the 2022 election campaign. *Image by Gabriela Sanda from Pixabay

French hospitals using VR tech to help surgery patients relax

06/07/2021

Hospitals in France are using virtual reality (VR) glasses to help patients relax and reduce their stress and pain during operations. Rouen and Strasbourg hospitals have both embraced the VR technology, which was launched last year by French start-up HypnoVR. The glasses can be worn by patients before, during and after surgery, helping them relax more, which can result in local anaesthesia being used instead of general during their procedure. The glasses can also help patients better manage post-surgery pain. They are said to be particularly effective for chemotherapy patients. Patients can choose from a range of virtual scenes, including a tropical beach, walking in the woods and even a journey into space. A calming voice accompanies the visuals and there are breathing exercises and a choice of music, too. While patients still have to receive anaesthesia, the amount required is often less while wearing the VR glasses. HypnoVR president Denis Graff, a medical anaesthetist and hypnotherapist, said: “We are trying to fight against the over-consumption of drugs, and we are trying to treat pain with a non-medicinal method in order to reduce the consumption of potentially dangerous drugs that can have severe side-effects.” *Image by Florian Pircher from Pixabay

France welcomes first post-uterus transplant baby birth

18/02/2021

A baby has been born in France following a uterus transplant for the first time, the hospital treating the mother and baby announced on Wednesday. While such births are not unprecedented, they are extremely rare, happening after a woman whose own uterus is damaged or missing has had a cutting-edge procedure to have a healthy one transplanted. The baby, a girl weighing 1.845kg, was born last Friday, according to the team at the Foch Hospital outside Paris. "Mother and baby are doing well," said Dr Jean-Marc Ayoubi, head of gynaecology, obstetrics and reproductive medicine at the hospital. The 36-year-old mother, who reports are naming only as ‘Deborah’, was born without a uterus because of a rare condition known as Rokitansky Syndrome, which affects about one in 4,500 women. Deborah received a uterus transplant in March 2019 from her own mother, then aged 57. The transplant was performed by the same team at the Foch Hospital that delivered the new baby. The first ever birth after a uterus transplant was in Sweden in 2014 and there have been other such births in the United States and Brazil to date. However, they remain rare. Nevertheless, this new birth, as well as those before it, will give hope to women who suffer similar reproductive problems that they maybe have alternatives to adoption or surrogacy.

Survey reveals 91% of gastroenterologists are planning to adopt telehealth into their practices

03/11/2020

The wider adoption of telemedicine has been one of the most prominent changes to come out of the Covid-19 pandemic. Indeed, data shows that usage of telehealth services has increased by more than 2,000% since last year. Now, new research shows that the vast majority of gastroenterologists are planning to use telehealth more going forward. According to the survey presented at the annual American College of Gastroenterology (ACG) 2020 conference, up to 91% of gastroenterologist respondents say they plan to integrate telehealth into their practice following the COVID-19 pandemic. Furthermore, the survey revealed that gastroenterologists typically view telehealth in a positive light, with 75% of survey respondents reporting their experience of telehealth solutions has been positive. Only 6% reported a negative experience. As many as 63% of gastroenterologists also said they felt telehealth was more efficient than traditional visits, while 58% considered adding telehealth visits between endoscopic procedures. In terms of barriers to telehealth adoption, the biggest for gastroenterologists was the inability to conduct a physical exam, cited by 44.1%. For 27% of gastroenterologist respondents, this barrier was considered critical. Around two-thirds of respondents said their adoption of telehealth solutions would depend on whether the medium would be covered by appropriate insurance payments (equal to in-person consultations). You can find out more about the telehealth services provided by us here at France Surgery by contacting us today.

Music is as effective as drugs at calming nerves ahead of surgery - study

23/07/2019

Most people feel nervous ahead of surgery, even if the procedure they’re about to undergo is straightforward. To calm these nerves, patients are often given medication. But a new study suggests that music could be just as effective. According to a study conducted by researchers at the University of Pennsylvania, a special song written to reduce anxiety, blood pressure and heart rate performed as well as a sedative for calming patients ahead of surgery. For the trial, 157 surgery patients were either given the drug midazolam or play the so-called “world’s most relaxing song”, Weightless by UK band Marconi Union, while they were being given an anaesthetic to numb a part of their body. Patient anxiety was equally reduced in both groups, suggesting the music was an effective alternative to the drugs. The great news about this is the music medicine is both free and completely safe, whereas the drugs cost money and can have side effects. Speaking about the findings of the research, Dr Veena Graff, assistant professor of anaesthesiology and critical care at the University Of Pennsylvania Perelman School Of Medicine, said: “Music lights up the emotional area of the brain, the reward system and the pleasure pathways. “It means patients can be in their own world, they can be comfortable and have full control.” Intrigued what the world’s most relaxing song sounds like? Listen to it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2JNM-xPZXgI

Robotic angioplasty at Pasteur Clinic in Toulouse

19/04/2019

The Pasteur Clinic has achieved a 1st in Europe   The Pasteur Clinic of Toulouse announces having achieved a European first in the field of cardiology thanks to the robotic pathway. Dr. Jean Fajadet thus performed the first coronary angioplasty in Europe under the assistance of a robot.   In the case of narrowing or occlusion of the arteries, created by deposits of atheromatous plaques, the cardiologist may recommend coronary angioplasty. This procedure consists of positioning a small balloon in the artery at the level of the narrowing or occlusion and inflating it to dilate the stenosis and crush the atheromatous plaque and thus obtain a normal flow in the coronary artery. In general, the following is stent placement, a mini-spring, which prevents the artery to reseal. The Pasteur Clinic has been performing this intervention for more than 30 years in interventional cardiology, percutaneously under local anesthesia.     With the acquisition of the robot (CorPath GRX System® Corindus®), the cardiologist can perform his act via joysticks. The robot is guided from a control room. It allows a great precision of the gesture and the absence of X-ray exposure for the personnel.   The Pasteur Clinic has also invested in a 4th generation da Vinci xi surgical robot for several specialties (urology, gynecology, digestive, thoracic surgery, etc.).   Source: La Depeche 

Experimental gene therapy used to halt most common cause of blindness in older people

21/02/2019

A woman from Oxford in the UK has become the first person in the world to have gene therapy in an attempt to halt the most common type of blindness in the West. Janet Osborne, aged 80, had a synthetic gene injected into the back of her eye in a bid to prevent more of her cells from dying. It is thought that Mrs Osborne is the first person to receive such treatment to combat age-related macular degeneration (AMD), which affects around 600,000 people in the UK alone. Carried out under local anaesthetic, the procedure was carried out at Oxford Eye Hospital by Robert MacLaren, professor of ophthalmology at the University of Oxford. Mrs Osborne is the first person of a 10-patient trial to receive the treatment, which is being conducted to check the safety of the procedure. All the trial participants have already lost some of their vision. If the trial proves successful, the aim going forward would be to use the gene therapy to halt AMD in its tracks before a person’s sight is impacted. Mrs Osborne and the rest of the trial participants will have their vision monitored to determine the effectiveness of the therapy. Speaking to the BBC, Mrs Osborne said: “I find it difficult to recognise faces with my left eye because my central vision is blurred - and if this treatment could stop that getting worse, it would be amazing.”

Huntington’s breakthrough hailed, may stop disease

11/12/2017

A pioneering breakthrough in the treatment of Huntington’s disease has seen the defect that causes it corrected for the first time. According to the research team from University College London, there is a real possibility that the deadly neurodegenerative disease could be stopped going forward. The team of scientists injected an experimental drug into spinal fluid which reduced the levels of toxic proteins in the brain. Experts are hailing the groundbreaking procedure as the potentially the biggest breakthrough in neurodegenerative diseases for 50 years. Huntington’s disease is a particularly devastating illness that is passed down through families. Some sufferers have likened it to having Parkinson's, Alzheimer's and motor neurone disease all at the same time. A genetic error causes the protein huntingtin – which is vital for brain development – to instead kill brain cells. The unstoppable degradation of brain cells in Huntington's patients leaves them in permanent decline and affects their movement, behaviour, memory and ability to think clearly. Huntington’s blights families and generally hits people while they are in their prime – 30s and 40s. Patients tend to die around 10-20 years after symptoms first appear. The revolutionary drug therapy works by effectively silencing the effects of the mutant huntingtin gene and preventing the harmful protein from ever being built. Professor Sarah Tabrizi, the lead researcher and director of University College London’s Huntington’s Disease Centre, said: “For the first time a drug has lowered the level of the toxic disease-causing protein in the nervous system, and the drug was safe and well-tolerated. This is probably the most significant moment in the history of Huntington’s since the gene [was isolated].”  

Daytime wounds heal more quickly than night-time ones

14/11/2017

Wounds that occur during daylight hours heal faster than wounds that occur after dark, a new study has found. The research discovered that burns sustained at night took, on average, 28 days to heal, while burns that occurred during the day only took 17 days. In fact, the team from the UK's MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology, which carried out the research, said the healing difference between daytime burns and night time burns was astounding. Publishing the findings of their research in Science Translational Medicine, the team of scientists said the difference in healing times was down to the way the human body clock ticks inside nearly every human cell over a 24-hour period. Specifically, fibroblasts, which are the body’s first responders that immediately head to a wound, are primed and ready to go during the daytime. However, at night, they lose this ability. It’s thought the research could lead to improvements in surgical procedures in the future. For example, drugs that reset a patient’s body clock could provide additional benefits during night-time procedures. Dr John O'Neill, one of the researchers, likened the way in which fibroblasts work to a running race: "It is like the 100m. The sprinter down on the blocks, poised and ready to go, is always going to beat the guy going from a standing start,” he said.

What is Coronary Angioplasty?

21/09/2017

Coronary arteries are the main blood vessels that supply the heart. Sometimes, these arteries can become narrowed or blocked, which can lead to the flow of blood to the heart becoming restricted. A coronary angioplasty is a surgical procedure used to widen blocked or narrowed coronary arteries. You may be surprised to learn that it is carried out using local anaesthetic and did you know that it involves a tiny balloon? The surgeon makes a tiny incision in your groin, arm or wrist and inserts a catheter. This is then guided to your affected coronary artery using an X-ray video. A tiny balloon is then inserted into the artery via the catheter. The balloon is then inflated to squash any fatty deposits against the wall of the artery widening it once more. This allows blood to flow freely again after the balloon is removed. A stent is sometimes also added and enters the artery at the same time as the balloon. It remains in place after the balloon has been deflated and removed to ensure the artery remains in the best possible shape to allow blood to flow freely going forward. The entire procedure only takes around 30 minutes to two hours and most patients are allowed to go home after just one or two days.

Increasing number of millenials undergoing cosmetic surgery to create dimples

25/07/2017

While cosmetic surgery is nothing new, a new craze among millenials is definitely garnering some attention at the moment. It’s called dimpleplasty and it basically involves having facial surgery to create dimples. Okay, so most people would agree that dimples are attractive, but isn’t having them artificially created going one step too far? The procedure, which costs as little as $800 and takes just half an hour to perform, has grown in popularity over the past few years. According to Wright Jones, a plastic surgeon from Atlanta, the main reason dimpleplasty is so popular is because of the “little downtime, enhancement of facial aesthetics, and lack of need for general anaesthesia”. Surgeons create a defect in the patient’s cheek muscle which is then reattached to the under surface of the skin. When the patient smiles, they miraculously have dimples. But the surgery isn’t permanent. It last for one to two months – is that long enough to justify the swelling and soreness that accompanies it?

Simple blood test can detect cancer years before symptoms appear

08/06/2017

A simple blood test that accurately detects several different types of cancer years before symptoms even appear could revolutionise how the disease is treated, scientists have said. Researchers hope the non-invasive test will pave the way for a future where the straightforward procedure could form part of routine health check-ups. It’s thought that thousands of deaths each year could be prevented with the tests as they can detect tumours at an early stage, when treatment is most effective. At present, the best method for detecting cancer is a biopsy, which involves cutting out a small piece of tumour tissue for lab analysis. However, biopsies are invasive and often painful, and a person already needs to have a tumour or at least a suspected tumour to have something cut out of it. That’s why scientists have been working to develop blood tests that can do the same, without the need for surgery. Speaking about the breakthrough, Dr Bert Vogelstein, a professor of oncology at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, told The Guardian: “It’s fair to say that if you could detect all cancers while they are still localized, you could diminish cancer deaths by 90 per cent.”

France Surgery once again triumphant at the IMTJ Awards

02/05/2017

This year's International Medical Travel Journal (IMTJ) Awards were held on April 26 in the beautiful town of Opatija, Croatia on the Adriatic coast. France Surgery had been nominated in the 'Best use of technology in medical tourism' category, so a small team travelled from France to Croatia to attend the awards ceremony. The best use of technology category recognises companies that have "developed or demonstrated innovative technology in healthcare enabling technology or applications, or for the innovative use of existing technology in health management to the benefit of the international patient." And it's with great pleasure and much honour that we can reveal that we won! Shown above accepting our award are France Surgery co-founders Carine Hilaire, Françoise Loesch and Dr. Marc Giraud, together with Keith Pollard, the Managing Director of International Medical Travel Journal. We’d like to take this opportunity to say a huge thank you to all our patients and everyone who has helped contribute to our success. Facilitating world-class medical procedures here in France and providing the best recovery services available is our passion, and it's so rewarding to be recognised (again) by the IMTJ. You can find out more information about the IMTJ Awards on the official website here.

Man Born Without a Hand Undergoes 'World First' Surgery to Have New Limb Attached

26/12/2016

A 32-year-old man who was born without a left hand has received one from a deceased donor, in an operation that surgeons claim is a world first. The man, who is known as Piotr, was born with a congenital birth defect which caused him to be missing the limb, but following the 13-hour procedure in Poland he now has a left hand for the first time in his life. At present, Piotr only has the ability to move his fingers, but doctors are confident that this will improve over time. Adam Domanasiewicz, who headed up the operation at Wroclaw Medical University, Poland, said: "It is the first graft in the world of an upper limb onto an adult with this congenital defect. "We are talking about a man who lived 32 years without this member." Domanasiewicz added that the operation could open up exciting new possibilities to hundreds of thousands of people in the world born without limbs, whose only option up until now has been prostheses. Bones are joined using titanium plates and screws, in much the same way as broken bones are fixed. They should eventually heal together, but the plates remain in place to ensure stability. Key tendons and muscles are then connected before the blood vessels are finally joined. With time and expert after care, the donor hand will move with strength and dexterity, and will even feel warm to touch and heal itself when injured.   While hand transplants have been previously performed on patients whose own limbs have been amputated, Piotr's operation is the first involving a person with a congenital birth defect resulting in a missing limb.

France Surgery Partner, La Clinique Turin, Installs New da Vinci Xi Surgical Robot

14/12/2016

La Clinique Turin, one of France Surgery's partners, becomes one of the first private establishments in the Paris region to install the new da Vinci Xi surgical robot. Dr. Olivier Dumonceau , a urologist surgeon of the La Clinique Turin in Paris, performed the first prostatectomy procedure in a private center in the Paris region using the new da Vinci Xi robot. This new generation of the da Vinci robotic surgical system allows for even more precise gestures for patient safety and helps obtain better intervention results. Surgeons benefit from improved 3D vision and increased movement accuracy with this new generation of surgical robot. Dr Olivier Dumonceau said: "This new generation of surgical robot marks an additional step of technology for the patient and surgeon. Our gestures are even safer, the patient can benefit from more precise surgery. We are now developing ambulatory robotic surgery for interventions that previously required several days of hospitalisation. Patient recovers faster and can leave the hospital quickly and safely. " Dr. Perrine Goyer, a digestive surgeon at the La Clinique Turin, added: "Robotic surgery offers today opportunities for minimally invasive surgery in new areas such as obesity surgery and digestive cancer for the most complex cases." Dr. Ludovic Friederich, gynecologist surgeon at the La Clinique Turin, said: "With this latest generation of machines, robotic surgery opens new perspectives for the treatment of endometriosis in very short stay with lightened suites. In particular, there is a reduction in postoperative pain." "Our development towards minimally invasive surgery and shorter hospital stays is strategic. The replacement of our previous robot with this new technology is a huge step forward. "The possibilities for interventions are now extended to pathologies as diverse as Prostatectomy, endometriosis or digestive surgery with an even higher level of result. The treatment can be performed on an outpatient basis without compromising the quality," said Stéphane Lievain, director of La Clinique Turin. La Clinique Turin carries out some 25,000 interventions per year. It features: 150 practitioners and offers complete care in surgery, medicine, dialysis and imaging (scanner, MRI and interventional radiology). Main specialties: urology, digestive, maxillofacial surgery, cardiology, ENT, orthopedics, vascular, plastic, gastroenterology, gynecology, nephrology. With a leading technical platform, it has 216 beds and places, 16 operating rooms as well as an intensive care unit in cardiology and a monitoring unit in the heart of Paris. It is regularly quoted in the health charts of the press.

Tiny-Armed Robot Could Revolutionise Surgical Procedures

13/12/2016

A tiny robot equipped with equally tiny tentacle-like instruments could soon revolutionise the way in which surgery is performed on people's eyes. Developed by UK-based Cambridge Consultants, the prototype Axsis robot will be able to provide a more accurate, minimally invasive way to conduct eye surgeries. The company behind the prototype has now released a video highlighting just how the delicate instrument can perform one of the world's most common surgical procedures: cataract surgery. Amazingly, the robot's movements are controlled using cables that are about the same width as a human hair, yet stronger by comparison than steel and Kevlar. Advanced sensing algorithms also minimise the risk of human error during operation. "By having a computer in the loop between when the surgeon’s moving their hands, and the robot moving, that computer can recognize when the surgeon is about to go outside and actually puncture the lens, for example, and stop that motion," said Chris Wagner, head of advanced surgical systems at Cambridge Consultants. It is thought that robots such as Axsis can improve treatments for both the surgeon and the patient. Check out Axsis in action in this amazing YouTube video.

The implant that reattaches the ears in 15 minutes

08/12/2016

                    The implant "Earfold" was tested on 7 year-old children, without any complication A new procedure to "reattach" certain ears, less invasive than conventional surgeries, is now available in France. If having peeled ears has no medical gravity, the people concerned can be the victims of mockery and afflicted with derogatory nicknames that can affect their psychological balance. Since last June, a metal implant created by Dr. Norbert Kang, an English surgeon, to correct this aesthetic defect, has been implemented in the French reconstructive surgery clinics. "An innovative technique" “Earfold”, the implant in question, is introduced under the skin thanks to a small incision in the anti-helix fold (cartilage that borders the hollow of the ear). The thin metal band made of nickel-titanium alloy (Nitinol), an elastic material used in vascular prostheses and unbreakable glasses frames, clings to the cartilage and immediately adopts its predefined shape by recreating the anti-helix crease which, when it does not exist, is responsible for some "peeling" of the ears. All people who can have a local anesthesia can benefit from this technique. It was tested on children of 7 year-old without any complication. On the other hand, it works only in individuals whose deformation is due to the absence or underdevelopment of the anti-helix fold. Individuals in whom detachment is caused by a deep shell (ear cavity) should go through more conventional and more complicated otoplasty procedures (ear surgery). In total, it is estimated that about 5% of the population is affected by detached ears, from all causes. "This technique is very innovative," says Dr. Michel Corniglion, a surgeon at the Saint-Charles Clinic in Lyon who carried out the first operation of this kind in France last June. "It has the advantage of being minimally invasive and the potential risks, such as hematomas and infections, are easily preventable if the surgeon meets the necessary hygiene conditions."

A Brief Guide to Hip Replacement Surgery

15/11/2016

Hip replacement surgery is a surgical procedure in which a surgeon removes portions of the hip joint that are arthritic or worn out and replaces them with artificial parts, often made from metal and plastic. It is a procedure that is often undertaken when other treatment options have failed to provide a satisfactory outcome. The result of hip replacement surgery is that the patient benefits from improved mobility, hip joint function and reduced/eliminated pain. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), some 332,000 total hip replacements are performed in the United States every year, highlighting that it is now a common procedure. Anyone who is experiencing debilitating hip pain and a loss of movement is a potential candidate for hip replacement surgery, but as with any medical intervention, the procedure may be unsuitable for some individuals. The really good news is that hip replacement surgery is now minimally invasive, meaning a surgeon can perform it with reduced pain; less muscle trauma; minimal scarring; and a smaller incision - all of which benefit the patient and afford a speedier recovery. You can find out more information about the hip replacement surgery options we can facilitate, including some of our partner clinics specialising in this procedure, on our website.

A Quick Guide to Cataract Surgery

27/10/2016

A cataract is a clouding of the eye's normally clear lens which can lead to diminished vision. And while the condition more commonly affects older individuals, people of all ages can get them. The good news, though, is that cataract surgery is a common procedure nowadays and statistics show that there is a high success rate of healthy vision post-surgery. In fact, uncomplicated cataract surgery can take just 10 minutes in some instances and patients can find themselves going home as quickly as 30 minutes after the procedure has been completed. Of course, as with most types of surgery, you'll need a friend or relative to help take you home afterwards as you'll be unable to drive. You'll also need to put drops in your eyes to prevent infection and may be advised to wear an eye shield to protect it while you sleep. Post-surgery patients are also told to avoid strenuous activities and not put their heads below their waistlines until the eye is completely healed. This takes around 8 weeks or so, after which time you'll be able to live a normal life once more - except with the benefit of rejuvenated vision. You can find out more about cataract surgery and see the clinics France Surgery utilises that specialise in the procedure here.

Bariatric Surgery Best for Long-Term Weight Loss

05/09/2016

The benefits of weight loss surgery for obese and overweight individuals have been known for a long time. However, a new study now shows that the results of bariatric surgery are not just short-term, and much of the weight appears to stay off for at least 10 years. In fact, the study goes on to state that bariatric surgery is more effective than other surgical procedures and non-surgical techniques when it comes to weight loss and long-term weight management. Published in the journal JAMA Surgery, the findings are notable because they include the results of a decade-long follow-up, in addition to two separate areas of study. Lead author of the study Matt Maciejewski, who is a professor of medicine at Duke University School of Medicine, in Durham, N.C., said: “This study suggests that patients interested in bariatric surgery, especially gastric bypass surgery, should be able to lose a significant amount of weight and keep that weight off for a very long time." For the study, the researchers first compared thousands of veterans who had received bariatric surgery to another group that hadn't. After a year, the bariatric surgery group had lost 31% of their starting weight, while the other group had lost just 1%. After 10 years, the bariatric surgery group had managed to maintain a nearly 21% greater weight loss than their non-surgical counterparts, highlighting the long-term benefits that weight loss surgery can have. The researchers then looked into how effective different types of weight loss surgery are. They found that after four years, patients who had undergone a gastric bypass had lost nearly 28% of their starting weight, while those who a had sleeve gastrectomy lost about 18% and those with gastric banding lost about 11%.

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