By Yusmary Romero Cruz on August 27, 2015
Over 43,700 patients have benefited from the medicine in Cuba, together with more than 160,000 across Latin America, the Caribbean and Europe
ARTEMISA.—Alina and Yanisel know just how it feels to see a patient benefit from treatment. This doctor and nurse receive numerous patients every week at the Angiology department of the Tomás Romay University Polyclinic.
Both have repeatedly witnessed the benefits of Heberprot-P, a drug developed by scientists at the Cuban Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (CIGB), which is already well-known, especially for those suffering from diabetes mellitus.
|About 3% of diabetes patients suffer a diabetic foot ulcer at some point in their life, Dr. Yanisel Campos notes. Photo: Yusmary Romero Cruz|
Prescribed to treat diabetic foot ulcers, the medicine is applied directly to the wound through intralesional infiltration. “The product accelerates the healing of ulcers and stimulates the epidermal growth factor receptor, which is deficient in these patients,” Dr. Yanisel Campos explains, coordinator of the Comprehensive Care Program for Patients with Diabetic Foot Ulcers (PAIPUD) in this province.
Silvia Cándida Fuentes is 73 years old and was diagnosed with diabetes some five years ago. This is the first time she is having Heberprot-P applied. “They apply it every three days, for two weeks, because I pricked my foot with a wire, it got bad and I couldn’t stand on it,” she explains.
“It’s a great drug, but were it not for the love and affection with which both the doctor and the nurse care for us, the effects wouldn’t be as good; and they are very rigorous. Family support is also essential.”
Meanwhile, Arminda Blain has benefited from the treatment four times, as one of the first patients when the program began. “It has always been effective and speedy for me,” the 86 year old states.
Experts note that diabetes mellitus is currently the fourth leading cause of death worldwide, and according to the International Diabetes Federation, and these ulcers are the most feared complication of the disease.
“Cuba has included the Herberprot-P treatment as part of its basic medical stock since 2007 and a program of national scope began to cover hospitals and institutes.
Consultations using Herberprot-P take place in over 370 institutions,” Yahima Chacón, a promoter of the CIGB in the province, notes.
According to a report by the Center, over 43,700 patients have benefited from the medicine in Cuba, together with more than 160,000 across Latin America, the Caribbean and Europe. Herberprot-P is registered in over 23 countries.
This year, efforts are being made in Artemisa province to increase the number of patients benefiting from the treatment, in comparison to 2014.
Since the program’s inception over a thousand patients have benefited in the province, with just 4.6% requiring a major amputation. Across the world, an amputation is performed every 30 seconds, half of which could be avoided with the adequate treatment.
Source: Granma International