Published: November 9th 2011November 8th 2011
Finally a clear day to see the beautiful Annapurnas surrounding Pokhara. I have been doing a rotation in Radio-diagnosis in the hospital. There has been a few interesting cases of TB ascites, massive lung cancers and infective brain lesions.
This morning I attended a TB lecture with the other students studying their MBBS at Manipal. It was a totally different experience to what I have in Sydney. Everyone wore their white lab coats, constantly answered "Sir" and stood up when they were spoken to. They were also assigned numbers for a roll call and we had to all stand when the lecturer arrived.
TB affects 1/3rd of the world's population, 95% of these cases are in developing countries and 98% of deaths also occur in developing countries. I think approximately 45% of Nepalese people are infected with TB. As this is such a big issue here, the lecture was very in depth compared to the one 40min lecture over the past four years I had back home in Sydney.
In the afternoon I attended a leprosy hospital (no pictures attached, don't worry)
The hospital was original called "Green Pasture Leprosy Hospital" as the grounds it was built
on consisted mainly of forest and people with leprosy used to hide there :( Leprosy still holds a negative stigma here and that it is a curse from wrong doings in a previous life. The name of the Hospital now omits leprosy and is called a rehabilitation hospital. In truth only about half of it's patients have Leprosy and the rest have amputations from MVAs, diabetes or birth defects.
It was such a peaceful place surrounded by the mountains. On this site they had a comprehensive unit which included the construction of various prostheses.
The experience dispelled some of the myths of leprosy for me. For example, when caught early (and before complications arise) leprosy is easily treated with antibiotics as it is a bacterial infection, also, it is not very contagious unless the patient's bacterial load is very high
Later in the evening I went for a trek up to The World Peace Stupa on the other side of the lake. We took a boat over and walked up the mountain to see the sun setting on the Annapurna range.
There are more photos below