UK Doctors Visit Mycetoma Research Centre

PM on tour UK

We are here in Sudan as visiting Research Fellows at the Mycetoma Research Centre (MRC) in Soba.
Dr Scolding has visited Sudan before several years ago, working at Soba Hospital and visiting the MRC previously, whilst this is Dr Abbas’ first stay. We are both medical doctors from the UK, where we trained at the Royal Free and University College London Medical School and continued working in hospitals in and around London, UK.

In Sudan we are working at the MRC for one month. Here we are working on several research and education projects alongside with the wonderful MRC team led by Professor Fahal. As well as looking at individual clinical cases, our joint research work has several areas of focus.
Mycetoma is well known in Sudan as a disease caused by bacteria and fungi. A patient develops a large swelling, commonly in the feet and legs, containing small holes which drain pus, fluid and small grains out to the surface. If left untreated, it can continue to grow and cause severe difficulties for patients trying carrying out everyday activities. Treatment can be with a range of medicines or surgical procedures.
We are working on a study looking at the disability caused by Mycetoma infection, to capture the effect the disease has on a person, how they function, how they relate to society and how society relates to them when they have the infection. The aim is to carry out the first exact measurement of Mycetoma disability in Sudan, which will lead to better understanding of the effects of the disease and help to inform policy planning.
Another study is looking at surgical treatment in Mycetoma, and some of the predictive factors relating to the decision to amputate, which is taken only when all other options are unlikely to achieve a cure.
Finally we are working together to develop education resources on Mycetoma, including an online e-learning module. The aim for this module is to disseminate learning materials on Mycetoma nationally and internationally so that awareness and understanding of the disease process is improved.
We have enjoyed our time in Sudan so far very much. We have been made very welcome by all staff members at the MRC, and by everyone we meet in Khartoum. We have also been very impressed by the expertise, professionalism and dedication shown at the MRC, and hope that our work can contribute to the existing efforts to combat this neglected tropical disease.