Chinese Medical Team Saves Sierra Leonean Woman from Severe Anemia Due to Placenta Residue

By Foday Moriba Conteh

In a remarkable medical intervention, Chinese gynecological expert, Liu Qiuhong, a member of the 24th Batch of China’s Medical Team in Sierra Leone and Deputy Chief Physician at the Hunan Provincial Maternal and Child Health Care Hospital in China, performed a critical uterine evacuation procedure at the China-Sierra Leone Friendship Hospital on August 31, 2023. This life-saving procedure effectively relieved a Sierra Leonean patient suffering from severe anemia due to residual placenta tissue, alleviating the patient’s pain and discomfort.

The 23-year-old Sierra Leonean woman had been pregnant for over three months when she experienced a tragic miscarriage, followed by continuous vaginal bleeding for four months. Unaware of the gravity of her condition, she sought medical attention only recently when she arrived at the China-Sierra Leone Friendship Hospital, complaining of abdominal pain and weakness.

The Deputy Chief Physician, Liu Qiuhong, carefully assessed the patient’s medical history, conducted a thorough physical examination, and ordered laboratory tests. Her findings revealed that the patient was severely anemic and had developed an infection due to prolonged blood loss.

Acting swiftly, Dr. Liu Qiuhong admitted the patient to the hospital, initiated anti-infection treatment, and administered a blood transfusion to correct the anemia. After successfully addressing the anemia and controlling the infection, Dr. Liu Qiuhong proceeded with the uterine evacuation.

During the surgical procedure, Dr. Liu Qiuhong discovered that the placenta tissue was deeply adhered to the uterine muscle wall. She performed the operation delicately, ensuring the protection of the endometrium to preserve the patient’s fertility while removing the residual tissue. In less than an hour, nearly 200 grams of calcified placenta tissue were safely removed by Dr. Liu Qiuhong. Following the removal of the residual tissue, the patient’s uterus contracted effectively, and vaginal bleeding ceased, putting an end to the patient’s suffering from the debilitating condition.

The Deputy Chief Physician, Liu Qiuhong, introduces that in Sierra Leonean culture, motherhood is highly valued, and women are encouraged to have as many children as possible. Consequently, fertility rates are notably high, leading to an increased incidence of fertility-related conditions such as miscarriages, infections, and retained products of conception.

She emphasized the importance of seeking prompt medical attention and following doctors’ advice for timely treatment to prevent the progression of these conditions. Delaying treatment not only affects the individual’s quality of life and fertility but also places a significant economic burden on families and communities.


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