Today we had a good laugh at breakfast when someone finally had the courage to ask Sallie about the bits of fabric that she had peeking from the neckline of her shirt and tied onto her shoes and watch. Sallie informed us that these were pieces of Bounce fabric softener sheets (scented only!!) A friend of Sallie swears that this is an effective mosquito deterrent, and perhaps less toxic than creams designed for that purpose. Cheryl, good scientist that she is, wants to subject them to rigorous testing. But Sallie is determined to embark on a business venture to produce jewelry woven with Bounce for the fashion-conscience Tropics-traveller. All proceeds to g to PINCC, of course. Stay tuned for the product rollout!!
Things were a bit less hectic on day 2 at the hospital. The clinicians saw about 40 patients and performed 2 LEEPs and 7 cryos, which made for an interesting and busy day. Unfortunately, one patient was diagnosed with cervical cancer, and will need more advanced care than our team can provide. These instances of cervical cancer will hopefully become increasingly rare as VIAA becomes more widely available in developing countries through programs like PINCC's. By way of comparison, clinicians Cheryl and Sharry, who identified the cancer, report that seeing 2-3 cases in 20 years of practice would be the average in the US.
In the photos of our teams at work, the level of concentration is apparent, as the clinicians use their Black Diamond headlamps to examine the patient's cervix. Cheryl, Jenny and Maraeling were so focused that they did not realize their photo was being taken. In another photo, Alexandra speaks to the patient while her students perform VIAA. After the examination, the patient Silvia is surrounded by Alexandra, Cristela and Brenda.
It was a fulfilling day in Leon. While we were all saddened by the patient with cervical cancer, the day had many good moments as the clinicians were able to treat 9 patients with lesions. Using VIAA, the clinicians were able to give good news to many more women whose abnormal pap results had prompted their referral to the hospital.