MOHAMAD NATHEER KHASRO
"WE NEED SUPPORT FROM THE WFNS FOUNDATION IN TRAINING NEUROSURGEONS"
Dr. Mohamad Natheer Khasro is working in one of the battlefronts of the Iraq war, Mosul. He received a Zeiss microscope as a WFNS Foundation donation, contributing to the fruitful neurosurgical career of Dr. Khasro.
The Central Office (Ms. Chen & Ms. Ling) very efficiently managed to deliver the equipment overcoming many difficulties including the need to make the shipment through different ways, etc.
Dr. Mohamad Natheer Khasro
What is your relationship with the WFNS Foundation and how did you meet them?
I have good relationships with the WFNS Foundation. We received a microscope a few years ago. Then we try to receive sets and a high-speed drill. Unfortunately, we couldn’t collect it from DHL and we think it was stolen. I tried to contact them at that time, so did the WFNS Foundation but we couldn’t do anything about it.
I have also participated in a WFNS Foundation Congress in Istanbul where I presented one of my projects. I have good relationships with neurosurgeons of the WFNS Foundation. For example, Prof. M. Zelali and I have worked trained with Prof. Ahmed Adnan for more than 2 years.
Tell us about your experience as a neurosurgeon
I acquired the Arabic Board Neurosurgery Masters Degree and I have worked for more than 5 years as a neurosurgeon. My interest relies on the base of the skull and in vascular surgery procedures.
I have also good experience in endoscopic surgeries as pituitary and craniopharyngiomas procedures. I have done more than 90 operations for ETV and realize tumor biopsies.
Dr. Mohamad Natheer Khasro before a neurosurgical procedure
Do you think that the WFNS Foundation is making a clear commitment to improve the most disadvantaged services?
Yes. We need support from the WFNS Foundation in training neurosurgeons because we have a lack of experience in advanced modern neurosurgery and we need the new instruments and surgical sets.
How do you see the Foundation’s work helping to reduce differences and disparities?
I have contacted Teresa Chen and others in the WFNS Foundation before about medical sets and microscopes. I am certain they are trying their best to help us.
Dr. Mohamad Natheer Khasro during a medical congress
What do you think of the distribution of the sets?
In Iraq, it’s not easy to receive the sets we need. We require the support of the WFNS Foundation to arrange deliveries with the Iraqi government through the embassies in Iraq. The other way is to send it directly to us, but in this way, we need to pay taxes and high shipment fees.
We have received a basic microscope from the WFNS Foundation and we use it now in our hospital, mainly in spine surgery. We would need a more advanced microscope for brain surgery.
How is neurosurgery in your country amidst so much tragedy?
Here in Mosul, there is a lot of limitations in surgeries mainly due to the shortage of facilities and resources. Also, there is a lack of training which all works under my personal efforts.
For example, I had to buy all the instruments with my own money (endoscopy and medical sets) to use in my surgeries.
The level of general neurosurgeons is good. Neurosurgeons do spine and brain surgeries and we have good experience in trauma cases and treatments. We don’t have the same experience in more sophisticated surgeries like procedures regarding the base of the skull, vascular and interventional, and scoliosis.
As for training, we have 2 qualified training and academic boards (Arabic and Iraqi) in Neurosurgery. The Arabic board is 6 years of academic studies and surgical training with examinations. Iraqi board is 5 years. Now we hope for the implementation of subspecialties in the studies.
Dr. Mohamad Natheer Khasro during endoscopic endonasal procedure
How is the political situation in your country at the moment?
Regarding safety now it’s safe. From the political situation, there is a lot of corruption that makes huge limitations to progress in every area.
Are there enough neurosurgeons?
Yes, there are, but there is a lack of training and subspecialties to specialize in.
Dr. Mohamad Natheer Khasro at the operating room
How do you think it can be boosted?
Mainly by the training of neurosurgeons. We need to have more experience and skills to accomplish our goal more efficiently.
I am very interested in the base of the skull and vascular surgery. Here we don’t have vascular surgeons and we lose a lot of patients; my aim and target are to help those patients. I have put a lot of effort into getting trained and achieving a diploma in the subspecialty of vascular surgery.
We need WFNS and the world to help us and put a thump in our city.
Dr. Mohamad Natheer Khasro at the hospital with some colleagues
Are you promoting research to optimize the quality of care?
Yes, we work on it very hard. I stay a lot in the hospital trying to help new surgeons, colleagues, and trainees.
We are trying to make our work and surgeries more systematic in our hospital and departments setting guidelines to ensure the safety of our patients and achieving the best results.
What is a normal day in your life like?
I wake up at 7 am, have breakfast, and go directly to the hospital. I work from 8 am to 2 pm and I have also 24 hours shift every week as a “doctor on duty” in case any emergency cases and unplanned operations appear.
After that, I go to a private clinic and sometimes to a private hospital. Then I return home around 8 pm.
I love reading and I prepare lectures for our trainees. Before the day of the surgery, I try to prepare my cases and discuss them with my colleges to try to find the best and safest option for the procedure of the surgery and to find the best resources available for our patients.
What has your career in this specialty been like?
I coursed a 6 years residency in neurosurgery and then, I worked for more than 5 years as a general neurosurgeon (specialized in the brain, spine, and peripheral nerve).
I love my job and my interests reside in the brain, more based in the skull and vascular areas. As I improve my skills I will soon start to work in vascular surgery in Mosul.
Dr. Mohamad Natheer Khasro at the hospital with his team
«In Mosul, there are a lot of limitations in surgeries mainly due to the shortage of facilities and resources»