War in Ukraine: London trauma surgeon helping save lives as Russia offensive continues via video tutorials

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An experienced war and trauma surgeon based in London has been helping save lives in war-torn Ukraine via video tutorials. David Nott was born in Wales but has travelled the world helping to save lives in some of the most dangerous war zones including Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria.

Last week he travelled to Ukraine and demonstrated key life-saving procedures to doctors and surgeons there. Professor Nott is currently a consultant surgeon at the NHS St Mary’s Hospital in West London but has been teaching Ukrainian health workers to treat war wounds such as bullet and blast injuries.

Russian tactics of bombarding and shelling cities and towns, as well as the presence of mines and artillery vehicles, mean fighters and citizens alike are the victims of major bomb, bullet or other trauma injuries, including being thrown against a building by a blast.

READ MORE: Putin launches test ‘Satan II’ missile in warning to the West and ‘those who threaten Russia’

Professor Nott said: “The emotions that healthcare professionals in Ukraine are feeling and the circumstances within which they are working – I’ve been there. I’ve worked in hospitals that have been hit by bombs. I’ve performed surgeries in the dark. I’ve been terrified for the lives of my patients. I can’t stop this war, but I can arm them with knowledge.”

Nott co-founded the David Nott Foundation, a charity which is “dedicated to delivering the specialist training that surgeons need to save lives in countries affected by conflict and catastrophe”. It focuses on preparing and training medical professionals in war-torn countries to be able to perform surgeries in response to war-time injuries.

According to the foundation’s website, it is currently on a mission to send a condensed version of its life-saving course to as many Ukrainian medics as possible. David has condensed the foundation’s surgical training into a 6-hour recording, divided into 15 chapters and packed full of surgical experience from the frontline. Chapters include triage, neurosurgery, damage control, burns, cardiothoracic, orthopaedics, paediatrics, plastic surgery and anaesthesiology.

He has previously also delivered a 12-hour course to Ukrainian health professionals on March 5, shortly after war broke out in the country, which trained 573 medics at once.

In addition to sending tutorials, Nott has given personalised advice to Ukrainian medics on the front line. The BBC reports one doctor known only as Oleksandr due to safety concerns watched Nott’s tutorial while he was in Ukraine.

Shortly after Nott arrived back in the UK, he sent a photo of an injury to the renowned war surgeon. He then spoke to Nott on the phone before performing a vital operation which saved the patient’s leg.

Professor Nott added: “Condensing my war surgery experience into a recording that can be streamed from any device means any doctor within Ukraine can gain life-saving skills. All of us at the foundation will continue to do all we can to help.”

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