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Lifesaving surgery on new born with diaphragmatic hernia operated during lockdown in Apollo Gleneagles Hospitals

Special Correspondent, abptakmaa, Kolkata, 25th June 2020 : Goldi Kumari from Dhanbad was nine months pregnant the 1st week of March, when her USG report detected that the baby she was carrying had “Diaphragmatic Hernia” and very little chance of survival. Her doctor in Dhanbad informed that her yet to be born child didn’t have the partition between chest and abdomen. In such cases, due to an abnormal opening in the diaphragm, some organs from the belly move into the chest cavity – in this case, the small and large intestines and spleen – occupying the space of the left lung, which does not let the left lung develop. A worried Goldi was not only anxious about the serious birth defect of her child but also the recent corona infection.

Looking for some hope, she landed in Apollo Gleneagles Hospitals, Kolkata all the way from Dhanbad in Jharkhand within the next few days as the family had heard that surgeries and other services were going on at the hospital.

On April 2, 2020, Goldi had a term delivery through caesarean section but her baby stopped breathing after taking just one breath. Since a team of doctors including obstetrician Dr. M. Padmaja, a Paediatric team comprising of Dr. Alakananda Das, Dr. Amrita Roy and Dr. Debasish Mitra as also a gynecologist, a neurologist and opediatric surgeon were there to revive the baby, she was immediately resuscitated and put on ventilation.

Diaphragmatic Hernia also causes hypertension in the pulmonary artery of the baby and makes the mortality rate of such babies very high. The echocardiograph detected the cardiac anomaly and she was given medicines to reduce hypertension in pulmonary artery and to prepare her for the surgery. Babies of that age if kept on ventilation on a long-term basis do not learn to breathe normally and never come out of ventilation. Also, there is a chance of neonatal sepsis. Hence, all effort was put in to stabilize her within a short span of time and was operated on the next day of her birth, something that sets this case apart.

The surgery was performed with the baby on general anaesthesia while she was still on ventilation. After a successful surgery, the baby was removed from ventilation within two days and gradual feeding was started from the third day. On the sixth day after surgery, Goldi finally got her baby girl to herself. “I remember doctors telling me that my baby may not make it. I was very scared when she was taken to the OT the day after being born. Due to the complications, we had lost hope but thanks to Dr. Debasish Mitra, today I have my baby with me. I will always remain grateful to him.” she said.

Dr Debasish Mitra, Senior Pediatric Surgeon, AGHL, said: “The mortality rate of babies born with Diaphragmatic Hernia is very high because they are unable to breathe with one lung, which itself isn’t fully developed. Immediate surgery is the only option. So, it is important to deliver the baby at a facility, which is fully equipped with all the necessary services. Transporting such babies from one hospital to another can be very risky even if done on ventilation.” Publicity : Adfactors.

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