A new pediatric bronchoscope for Haydom Hospital

Foreign body aspiration is unfortunately still one of the greatest dangers and silent killers of children in the first two years of life. A peanut or a piece of corn that, once placed in the mouth, enters the deep respiratory tract, not seldom results in the slow choking of infants, who often do not yet have sufficient coughing stimulus to expectorate this foreign body. A valve mechanism often results in inhaled air not being able to escape. The lungs overinflate and small alveoli rupture and burst, causing dangerous air accumulation in the chest.

Such foreign body aspiration is an absolute emergency. Until now, Haydom did not have child-sized and small instruments that could be safely inserted into the airways of young children without causing injury. The children often had to be riskily bronchoscoped either with adult instruments or transported many hundreds of kilometers often without oxygen supply to the hospital in Arusha 350 km away. Most of them did not survive this transport.

Haydom Friends e.V. has therefore handed over a children’s bronchoscope with a special optic, financed by donations, to the Haydom surgical team. With a special optic, the surgeon can project the image onto a large monitor, which makes it easier to find the foreign body in the often very narrow airways, and with a special optical gripper, the foreign body can then be retrieved under good visibility. After the new pediatric bronchoscope was handed over, it was immediately put into operation and the OR staff was trained in its use. In the future, hopefully no child will have to die from foreign body aspiration.

Many thanks to all supporters and especially to the company Storz, which supported this investment significantly.