Blood filtering treatments save children with urea cycle disorder

Two babies at the National Children Hospital in Hanoi received the first successful treatment for urea cycle disorder.

Doctors worked around the clock administering continuous blood filtrations, said Director Le Thanh Hai.

Urea cycle disorder is a genetic disorder caused by a mutation resulting in an enzyme deficiency in the urea cycle. The enzymes lacking are responsible for removing ammonia from the blood stream.

In early March 2014, a child was taken to the hospital in critical condition. The one-week-old baby turned blue and fell unconscious.

Tests revealed the child had an alarmingly high level of ammonia in the blood. She received a three-day blood filtering treatment and is currently in stable condition.

The second child received a 10-day treatment after entering the emergency room. He is currently in stable condition.

These children are the first survivors of the disorder.  Doctors were unable to stabilize children before blood-filtration technology arrived.

Surgeons of the National Children Hospital plan to separate conjoined twins next week. Nguyen Quang A. and Nguyen Quang N. from the northern province of Yen Bai are conjoined in the chest and belly.

Each has his own liver, bile and heart.

By Minh Khang - Translated by Uyen Phuong

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