On this page are news and comments about some current issues and research

The Covid-19 Pandemic

Almost all hospital physicians are now working within the confines of the Covid - 19 virus precautions - here I am in standard protective clothing (PPE) to avoid transmission. Even our routine work - such as endoscopy - now has to be carried out with these measures in place, slowing up the process and making life hot and uncomfortable. Note the identification label (it's difficult to see who's who) and imagine how difficult it is to talk through these close fitting masks.

The Lancet Commission on Liver Disease

The importance of liver disease in the UK and the evidence base for the disease burden and costs are comprehensively summarised in the excellent report published by the Lancet on December 1st. One of the underlying themes is the growing incidence of alcoholic liver disease and the possibility of a change derived from economic policies. Below is one of the figures showing a disturbing trend in the last two years linked to the increasing affordability of alcohol

A second look at Beethoven - Liver Study day 2018

It is well known that Beethoven died of chronic liver disease and was badly affected by it during his last year of life. His music from this time, particularly the late Quartets, have an uneven and sparse quality that could indicate the effects of hepatic encephalopathy on his brain. We discussed this possibility at our seminar on hepatic encephalopathy with Dr Debbie Shawcross at the recent Regional meeting in Maidstone and agreed it was quite likely to be one of the influences on his final musical compositions.

2016 marked the 50th Jubilee of the Liver Unit at Kings College Hospital. 

The occasion was marked by a reunion and conference and many hepatologists attended from all around the world. Professor Williams, the Director, is at the centre of the front row in this picture of some of the alumni:

Quality in Care Award

The national Quality in Care Awards recognize good practice in Care and Delivery. Here is the Hepatitis Team, based at Maidstone Hospital, at the Awards Ceremony in October 2015

Research into endoscopic therapy:

Our latest research has been presented by Dr Dushen Murugiah  at the Royal Society of Medicine and was judged the best presented poster by Professor Parveen Kumar:

Other recent research has been presented in the form of a poster at a meeting in Germany  (Falk Cholangoicarcinoma Workshop). This provided details of the outcomes of the use of metal stenting in certain forms of cancer: here are members of the international hepatology community looking at the results.

BMJ Awards

The Hepatitis Team, based at Maidstone Hospital, was a runner up in the Clinical Leadership category of the British Medical Journal Health Awards for 2013. Getting recognition for some of the challenges overcome in setting up an inreach team for the local prisons  has been very encouraging. Below are some photos we had to supply for the organisers of this event:

Counselling a prisoner in the clinic

The whole team outside the main entrance to HMP Maidstone