Endoscopic nasosinusal and skull base surgery have today reached levels that were hard to imagine only a few years ago. New technologies such as navigators, motorized instruments and other specialized equipment have allowed the development of new treatments that were unthinkable until now.
Cuba is no exception. At the National Cen ter for Minimal Invasive Surgery neurosur geons and ENT (ear, nose and throat) spe cialists with high-level knowledge and new technology allowing them to treat patients referred from across the country.
Five specialists make up the team atten ding illnesses affecting the nose, sinuses and skull base. Two have doctorates in Medical Sciences, three are auxiliary professors and two are assistant resear chers, with more than twenty years ex perience in the field. These professionals are well qualified with solid experience acquired through training courses and practice at top level institutions worldwi de, including the USA, Canada, Australia, Spain, Italy, Mexico and Germany. They have been involved in exchanges at the Centre with international specialists in the field, as teachers and participants at multiple national and international events.
Their work includes the endoscopic treatment of inflammatory nasal diseases such as sinonasal polyposis and chronic sinusitis, with more than one hundred and fifty patients receiving surgery in 2017. They also treat orbital (eye socket) pathologies and complex neurological di seases like hydrocephalus and intracranial tumors. Additionally the team are spe cialized in the endoscopic management of tumors nose, sinuses and skull base with particularly ample experience in pi tuitary tumors. Over the past seven years they have treated over three hundred and fifty patients with pituitary tumors, whose clinical management requires two specialities to join forces. Cerebrospinal leaks, requiring four-handed surgery with the assistance of navigation systems, are another of the team’s specialties and the centre is the national reference point for this type of surgery.
The team also treats tracheal and laryn geal pathologies such as laryngeal tumors, paralysis and stenosis (narrowing) with over seventy patients operated last year.
Both specialities are taught together at the centre’s postgraduate faculty, which has a technical training facility fully equipped with instruments and training dummies. For ENT surgeons and neurosurgeons there is a Diploma in Sinonasal Endoscopy and over sixty specialists from Cuba and abroad have graduated from the course to date.
These treatments are supported by an expert anesthetics and resuscitation department highly skilled in dealing with these kinds of patients, as well as a very experienced intensive therapy unit. Fully equipped with the skills and equipment required to prevent and treat possible complications, they contribute to the centre’s low mortality and morbidity rates.
The centre is dedicated to its continuing development in the various specialties. It is also in the process of acquiring licenses to use stem cells in treatments for central nervous system ailments.