“I’ve seen medical marvels in movies, but I never imagined I’d experience one.”

Grateful patient Richard received an Interventional Radiology procedure at PRHC

Richard Tukendorf, 62, knows the stress and fear of waking up in the middle of the night with the sudden awareness that something is very wrong. Severe pain had the hardworking farmer doubled over. A trip to the washroom revealed another serious symptom: blood in his urine.

At Richard’s local Emergency Department, he had a CT scan. Doctors were concerned he might have a tumour, so he was transferred to PRHC to see a specialist.

When he arrived at the Health Centre, the urologist waiting for Richard reassured him that he didn’t think it was cancer. A scope revealed a ruptured vessel in the kidney as the source of the pain and bleeding.

But Richard’s original fears were replaced with a new worry: would he need major surgery and be laid up, unable to keep up with farm work?

“Twenty years ago, the answer to that question would have been yes,” Richard says. “Doctors would have had to remove some or even all of my kidney. But, thankfully, technology has come a long way since then.”

Instead of having conventional surgery, Richard was a candidate for innovative, minimally invasive Interventional Radiology. PRHC expert Dr. Fady Abdelsayed used a high-tech X-Ray to steer a tiny needle through Richard’s blood vessels into his kidney. He then used glue to seal the ruptured vessel to stop the bleeding. Richard was awake for the procedure, but with freezing, felt no pain. The whole procedure took about an hour.

“That’s all there is to it. Not even one stitch. The pain was gone instantly as if someone flipped a switch,” he says. “I’ve seen medical marvels in movies, but I never imagined I’d experience one.”

Richard walked out of the hospital the next day and went back to work on the farm. He’s grateful that Interventional Radiology was available to him, close to home. It’s available because donors have funded the technology and facilities PRHC’s interventional radiologists need to perform this type of procedure.

But now, PRHC’s Interventional Radiology suites are 13 years old, and they’re too small to fit the latest, state-of-the-art equipment and the number of medical experts needed to use it. The suites must be upgraded and expanded to meet the increasing need for Interventional Radiology, and to bring new lifesaving and life-changing treatment methods to our region.

Because the government only funds a portion of the hospital’s needs, donor support is essential to this investment in Interventional Radiology. With your help, PRHC will build a new step-down unit for rapid, high-demand procedures, add more recovery beds, and create more space for professionals like Dr. Abdelsayed to work. Then they’ll be able to perform more procedures for patients like Richard, who will receive the care they need with less risk, less pain and a shorter hospital stay.

You can help patients like Richard by donating online, or for more information, please call 705-876-5000.

Thank you, from PRHC’s President & CEO

PRHC President & CEO, Dr. Peter McLaughlin

“We are fortunate to have some of the most hardworking, caring and dedicated people on our team at PRHC, and a wonderful community supporting us here in the Peterborough region.

On behalf of your hospital, I would like to acknowledge and thank our patients and their families; our leaders, healthcare professionals, staff and volunteers; our partners in the community and region for your ongoing insights, collaboration and support; and the PRHC Foundation and through them, our generous donors.

I’m thankful for the role you play in keeping PRHC at the cutting-edge of patient care. Your generosity is putting the right tools in the hands of our healthcare teams, so they can save lives, and it’s helping us bring groundbreaking new services to our region.”

Learn more about “the best kept secret in medicine”

A doctor poses outside the hospital

Dr. Fady Abdelsayed is an Interventional Radiologist at PRHC. We asked him to tell us about interventional radiology, known as “the best kept secret in medicine,” and how an upgrade and expansion to PRHC’s IR facilities will improve care for thousands of patients in our region…

What is interventional radiology?

In interventional radiology we use real-time imaging – radiology – to find and correct, or intervene in, health conditions. We use CT scans, fluoroscopy or ultrasound to steer needles, guidewires and catheters into tiny incisions in the skin or through blood vessels to perform a procedure.

What kind of procedures use interventional radiology?

Interventional radiology is becoming integral to patient care. We use it during scheduled procedures and in emergencies. It’s helpful for a wide range of health conditions and patients. If a patient has an infection, we might use interventional radiology to drain it. With cancer, we might use it to do a biopsy. Bleeding – we might use interventional radiology to stop the hemorrhage. And if surgery is too high-risk for a patient, this kind of procedure could be a safer, faster option. Some days, no two procedures are the same or an everyday procedure needs a new ‘twist’ to get the best result for that patient.

How does interventional radiology support great patient care at PRHC?

It helps us innovate and push the boundaries of what we can do for patients. It often lets us quickly give a patient relief from discomfort or help get them a diagnosis. Because it’s minimally invasive, patients have less pain, shorter hospital stays, and face less risks than with surgery.

If PRHC has this service now, why should donors invest in it?

Right now, interventional radiology is used for almost 6,000 patients at PRHC every year, but the two interventional radiology suites were built 13 years ago. They’re too small to fit the number of medical personnel and state-of-the-art equipment we need to expand and offer this care to more patients. We can do this with renovated suites, a new step-down unit and cutting-edge equipment. We’ll also be able to introduce new methods to treat things like stroke and cancer. We all want to give our patients the best care possible, but the government funds only a portion of the hospital’s costs. So, we’re very grateful to our community for helping us by donating to the PRHC Foundation. Thank you, donors!

For more information or to support this exciting investment, please click here or call 705-876-5000.