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Chen Peng—Across the seas, a medical journey to The Gambia

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Chen Peng, an associate professor in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Shengjing Hospital of China Medical University, has profoundly impacted his career and understanding of healthcare. After earning his MD and PhD degrees from China Medical University, he furthered his education as a visiting scholar at Yale University in the United States. In 2023, he joined the sixth China Medical Team to The Gambia, a journey that deeply influenced both his professional trajectory and his understanding of healthcare.

During his service in The Gambia, Chen faced numerous challenges. One notable instance involved an urgent call to manage a complex case initially misdiagnosed as a simple uterine fibroid. The patient was actually suffering from severe pelvic inflammatory disease with dense adhesions in the pelvic cavity, which complicated the surgery. Despite the rudimentary equipment and limited resources, Chen initiated the first multidisciplinary team (MDT) operation within the sixth Chinese medical mission. With the cooperation of anesthesiologists and general surgeons from his team, he not only successfully completed the surgery but also preserved the patient’s fertility, giving her renewed hope. This successful collaboration led to favorable outcomes for several patients.

Beyond his clinical duties, Chen has been instrumental in promoting cooperation between Shengjing Hospital and The Gambia’s Edward Francis Small Teaching Hospital, focusing on obstetrics and gynecology. This collaboration is now in its second phase, aiming to enhance infrastructure and the sharing of knowledge, skills, and resources, thereby elevating health standards for Gambian women. A key component of this project has been his dedication to teaching minimally invasive gynecological techniques, particularly hysteroscopy, which was previously rare in the region. His efforts have enabled local doctors to diagnose and treat post-miscarriage intrauterine adhesions effectively, significantly improving patient outcomes and boosting the overall capacity of local medical facilities.

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These experiences have not only enriched Chen’s medical skills but have also deepened his sense of duty as a physician, reinforcing his commitment to global health. He continues to cherish life and is determined to persist in his efforts to alleviate suffering and promote health worldwide through international medical aid, bringing his knowledge and passion to the forefront of the medical field.

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