Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University physicians said Monday it would take at least two weeks to begin treatment of former prime minister and BNP chairperson Khaleda Zia, suffering from rheumatoid arthritis for last 30 years and diabetes for 20 years.
Doctors in the reconstituted medical board told a news briefing that her main health problem was rheumatoid arthritis causing severe pain in bone joints and that she was also suffering from prolonged diabetes, hypertension and other health complications.
‘At least two weeks are needed to start her main treatment depending on the conditions of her major organs like heart, liver and kidney and the status of diabetes,’ said MA Jalil Chowdhury who leads the medical board, two days after she was admitted to the government run hospital.
It can’t be said now how long she has to stay in the hospital, the medical board chief told reporters.
‘Prolonged rheumatoid arthritis developed deformity in her left hand and frozen her left shoulder. She has arthritis in her left hip joint and the knees. She is suffering from uncontrolled diabetes, hypertension, painful urination and respiratory problem,’ he said about her latest health condition after the 5-member medical saw her Monday afternoon.
‘Before starting the main treatment of rheumatoid arthritis she is suffering from her other health conditions should ascertained,’ he said.
Medicines of rheumatoid arthritis cannot be given to her if the conditions of her heart, liver, kidney and diabetes don’t permit’, he said.
‘We need to asses her overall health condition and it will take at least two weeks,’ said professor Jalil.
The assessment process is on, he added.
Jalil said that her existing treatment would continue alongside physiotherapy.
Ailing Khaleda was shifted to the BSMMU hospital on Saturday after she had been confined in the abandoned Old Dhaka Central Jail since February 8, as the government did not allow her to leave the jail though the Supreme Court granted her bail.
Jalil said the medical board is committed to provide her ‘improved treatment’.
‘We don’t think that she needs to go abroad to get treatment,’ he said.
Doctors of her choice would be made available for her treatment if she wants, he said.
Medical board member, rheumatology professor Syed Atiqul Haq said an assessment of her body organs was needed to know if she could take the medicines for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis.
She would not be able to take the medicines to get relief from pain without controlling her diabetes and infections, he said.
Atiqul Haq said following the medical board’s decision he visited Khaleda Zia on Sunday night and would visit her again on Monday night.
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