Landmark Achievement at KNH: Baby Successfully Receives Transfusion While in Mother’s Uterus

August 2, 2023

The Kenyatta National Hospital is celebrating a significant advancement in fetal medicine following the successful in-utero transfusion of a baby.

While announcing the historic milestone in a statement to newsrooms on Monday, KNH  said the highly delicate procedure, known as an intrauterine foetal transfusion, involved the injection of red blood cells from a donor into the foetus while still in the mother’s uterus.

“The procedure was undertaken by a team of four doctors who included specialists Dr Rosa Chemwey, Dr Flavia Ogutu, and Dr Ikol Adung’o, as well as Dr Kunjira Murayi (Interventional Radiologist). They were assisted by Nurses Mr Benson Nyankuru, Ms Redempata Mumo, and a reproductive Health Clinical Officer – Mr Tony Wainaina,” KNH said.

“Using ultrasound to determine the position of the fetus and the placenta, the surgeon inserts a needle into the mother’s abdomen and then into the umbilical vein or the fetus’ abdomen,” KNH explained.

Red blood cells that are compatible with the foetus’ blood type are passed through the needle into the fetus.

Specialists said the transfusion procedure takes between 30min to an hour.

Kenyatta National Hospital Chief Executive Officer Evanson Kamuri hailed the team for another milestone.

“This is foetal medicine and an institutional landmark. We have attained yet another achievement in fulfilling our mandate as a top premier referral hospital. I’d like to thank the team of doctors and those assisting them for the splendid work done. This confirms we have the very best medics here at KNH,” Dr Kamuri said.

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