Dr. Sumroeng Neti,
Surgeon specializing in Orthopedics
Dr. Sumroeng graduated at the top of his class with honors from the Faculty of Medicine, Siriraj Hospital, Mahidol University, achieving top ranks in examinations to become a qualified orthopedic surgeon.
Why did you choose to study Hand and Microsurgery?
There are only two things that make humans superior to other living beings: first is the brain, and second are the hands. The hands are such a vital part of the body, yet many overlook this fact until they face circumstances in which they can no longer use their hands as they once did. Hand surgery is very complex and requires special ability. For example, the replantation of digits requires the reconnection of tiny blood vessels – and not just anybody is capable of doing it. I enjoy the challenge and am thankful that I can help so many people. In the first two years of my profession, I replanted digits for about one hundred patients.
What principle or philosophy guides your work?
I devote myself to my duty as a surgeon with sincerity and being straightforward. Despite being a surgeon, I always teach my students to choose surgery as the last option, provided that there are no better alternatives. Our working philosophy is to cure our patients without surgery, but if it is necessary we need to do our best and this professional honesty gains patients’ trust.
Along with conducting weekly training sessions for new physicians, Dr. Sumroeng also holds the positions of vice-chairman of the Thai Society for Surgery of the Hand, as well as being a member of the committee of the Thai Society for Reconstructive Microsurgery, and secretary of the Thai Society for Spinal Surgery. He was formerly the vice president of the Royal College of Orthopedic Surgeons of Thailand under the Royal Patronage of His Majesty the King.
Dr. Pitsanu Kerdsinchai,
Physician specializing in Cardiology
Dr. Pitsanu graduated from the Faculty of Medicine, Chiang Mai University, before pursuing further education in Coronary Angioplasty and Stenting in Belgium. He has worked with Bumrungrad International Hospital for over twenty years. He is considered one of the best-skilled and most experienced cardiologists in Thailand.
What is the greatest challenge of being a cardiologist?
The greatest challenge in a cardiologist is working against time. Delay in treating emergency patients with acute coronary syndrome runs the risk of causing the cardiac muscles to slowly die. Not only does a patient need to arrive quickly at the hospital, the medical team also needs to act fast. The hospital’s operation rooms must be ready 24 hours a day. In this respect, a coronary angioplasty can be performed at Bumrungrad within an hour of the patient’s arrival. We can say that Bumrungrad meets the criteria of delivering treatment at world-class speed.
What is your work philosophy?
Successful treatment requires trust between doctors and patients. A review of the patient’s medical history is vital. When the doctor knows everything about the patient’s health, he or she can give a more accurate diagnosis. But if the patient has no confidence or trust and does not provide all the necessary information, then the physician will be unaware of key facts, and that may lead to misdiagnosis. Therefore, we need to first gain the patients’ trust. Additionally, our healthcare providers should regard patients as if they are family, and treat them as best as we can.
Dr. Verapan Kuansongtham,
Surgeon specializing in Spine Surgery and Neurosurgery
Upon graduation from the Faculty of Medicine, Ramathibodi Hospital, Mahidol University, in the field of Neurosurgery, Dr. Verapan pursued further study in Minimally Invasive Brain and Spine Surgery in Germany and the United States. Subsequently, he returned to teach at the Faculty of Medicine, Ramathibodi Hospital, Mahidol University – a position he still holds. He is the founder of the Spine Institute at Bumrungrad International Hospital, providing treatment and care to thousands of patients with back and neck pain.
What sparked your interest in Spine Surgery?
My personal experience of having had back surgery due to a herniated disc made me truly understand how patients feel. At that time in 2007, despite it being microscopic surgery, the size of the incision was 7.5 centimeters. I later learned of a spinal surgery technique developed in Germany that reduces the incision to only seven millimeters. I was so impressed that I expanded my interest from brain surgery to minimally invasive spine surgery as well.
Bumrungrad features a dedicated Spine Institute, with state-of-the-art facilities offering our patients a high quality of care as well as conducting research and education. Through this collaboration of expertise, the Spine Institute makes it possible for us to provide the most up-to-date treatment to our patients.
What’s it like working at Bumrungrad?
I admire Bumrungrad for placing importance on both teaching and research. In conjunction with hospitals from Germany, we’ve provided training courses in endoscopic surgery for surgeons from different countries worldwide, for over eight consecutive years. The training is held once a year in Thailand, and twice a year in Germany, welcoming physicians from all over the world to join in. Hundreds of Thai physicians have been trained at our institute, organized with support from Bumrungrad.
Dr. Thanyalak Chaiseri,
Physician specializing in Cardiology
For over 30 years, Dr. Thanyalak has helped many patients with heart diseases improve their quality of life. After graduating in Medicine first in her class with honors from Chulalongkorn University, she studied Cardiac Medicine at Ramathibodi Hospital.
What was your most challenging case?
My most challenging case was a patient who had cyanotic complex congenital heart disease. Normally, for young patients, most symptoms could be properly controlled with medication. But as people age, the conditions of existing heart disease have a cumulative effect on the function of both the lungs and heart. This patient also had developed thyrotoxicosis, which caused complications and directly affected cardiac function. There was backflow of venous blood from the right heart chamber through the septal defect that caused the venous blood to mix with the arterial blood in the left chamber. The arterial oxygen level dropped far below the normal range, and that led to cyanosis and marked exhaustion. As a result, the patient was unable to perform any normal life activities and was bed-ridden and fully dependent on oxygen for support of life.
This patient was treated in our cardiac care unit, where our full team of specialists provided tertiary care until the severe cardiac failure was improved and her condition was safe enough for surgical correction. This kind of cardiac surgery specifically required specialized cardiac surgeons. Happily, the patient had a successful operation with excellent results. The patient regained a good quality of life and could finally return to work, travel abroad, and live a normal life. This outcome was beyond the expectations of the patient and the family prior to treatment.
What is the most impressive treatment you have performed?
I have worked with Bumrungrad International Hospital for over 25 years and have successfully treated a great number of heart-disease patients. One was a female patient who had severe valvular endocarditis and was transferred to Bumrungrad from another hospital, as her condition continually worsened. She finally had surgery for a prosthetic heart valve replacement, and she regained normal heart function and overall health. For twenty years after her treatment, this patient had led a life without limitations. Every time she traveled abroad, she would buy me a gift – so often that I had to ask her to stop. She once asked permission to hug me, as a token of her appreciation and said that she would never forget that it was me who saved her life and continues to take care of her to this day. I am truly honored that she put her life in my hands, and had complete trust in me.