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Rare surgery on 2-month-old baby who suffered heart attacks

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New Delhi :A team of doctors at a hospital here successfully operated on a two-month-old baby girl who suffered multiple heart attacks due to a rare abnormality.

The surgery, performed on baby Aditi on February 22 at Sir H N Reliance Foundation Hospital and Research Centre, lasted nine hours.
“She is now fine and doing well,” doctors attending on her told reporters here today.

While conducting an echocardiography on the infant, the doctors had found an abnormal artery origin which was turning away majority of blood supply from the heart, and was reversing the blood flow away from the heart as well.

Having been born with this defect, the baby suffered repeated heart attacks, Dr Shivaprakash, Chief Surgeon and Head of Paediatric Heart Centre of the hospital, said.

Medically termed as Anomalous Left Coronary Artery from Pulmonary Artery (ALCAPA), the lesion was caused by an abnormal origin of left coronary artery (the artery that carries blue impure blood to lungs), he said.

“In the case of a normal baby, pressures in the lungs normalise seven days after birth… but in Aditi’s case the lesion diverted the pink (pure) blood, thereby severely reducing the supply of pure blood to the heart. It resulted in frequent and silent heart attacks that damaged the heart muscles,” the Chief Surgeon said.

Shreepal Jain, paediatric cardiologist of the hospital, said, “such children usually die of heart failure before their first birthday.”

According to him, this defect is extremely rare—one in 3,00,000 deliveries—and hence is often missed by doctors.
Shivaprakash led the surgical team that operated upon Aditi. The other members were Gananjay Salve, Sandeep Katkade, Vilson and Subhash Sawant.

For the reconstructed heart to function properly, it was supported for 30 minutes post-surgery. The doctors converted the bypass circulation to left heart bypass for these 30 minutes, before the heart gradually took over the full load of circulation.

Aditi’s condition stabilised after five days. She is likely to be discharged in the next few days. With gradual recovery, she is expected to have normal heart function in the next few months, and should be able to lead a normal life, the doctors added.
“We are very happy that the surgery was successful,” said her parents, Preeti and Pramod Gilbele.

PTI

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