Mahalaxmi Hospital performs 500 heart surgeries in a year

The Narayana Health Society for Rehabilitation of Crippled Children (NH SRCC) in Mumbai has performed 500 heart surgeries on children in the year since it was established in Mumbai.

The Mumbai branch of the Bengaluru-headquartered institution was established in Mahalaxmi with the aim of providing affordable health care to children, especially cardiac care.

Among the 500 surgeries that the hospital has conducted is an ‘Intercardial Repair of Tetralogy of Fallot with Bentall’ operation. A congenital heart defect, Tetralogy of Fallot is a rare condition among children and can include several disorders, including a stenosis or a narrowing of the pulmonary valve, due to which the heart has to pump harder than usual, and not enough blood reaches the lungs of the patient, as was observed in the 14-year-old boy operated upon earlier this year.

Doctors at the hospital said the procedure involved a boy who was diagnosed with blue baby syndrome, a condition where a hole in the heart causes impure blood to flow back into the body without passing through the lungs properly. The boy belonged to a family from the lower socioeconomic group and could not receive surgery even after being diagnosed.

The surgery, which lasted 10 hours, was performed by Dr. Pradeep Kaushik, senior cardiac surgeon and Dr. Supratin Sen, consultant, paediatric cardiology from NH SRCC. The doctors performed a first-of-a-kind procedure on the patient where they not only corrected the hole in the heart, but also sutured the stenosis and fixed the ascending aorta with a composite graft.

“The patient having suffered from the ailment since birth needed both the procedures to be done immediately. There is no past history on record of such a combined surgery being done successfully,” said Dr. Kaushik.

Dr. Sonu Udani, Medical Director at NH SRCC, said India, with its incredibly high birth rate, also has the largest number of patients with congenital heart defects. The hospital specialises in paediatric surgery with a focus on aiding those from the lower socioeconomic demographic. With over 10 medical aid camps being conducted in seven districts of Maharashtra, the hospital has screened over 1,500 patients, of whom over 450 needed cardiac surgery.

“These patients we screen from villages tend to have very common heart defects which can be treated well but the children are extremely malnourished which makes even simple procedures very complex,” Dr. Sen said.

The hospital receives donations from NGOs as well as Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis’ relief fund which helps the doctors reach out to more patients who are in need of medical aid.


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