Vol. 5 Num 232 Sun. January 16, 2005  
Star Health

Making history in open heart surgery
Patient having multiple heart disorders survives after surgery

It was an exceptional episode in the history of the cardiac surgery of our country when a team of local surgeons, anaesthesiologists, nurses and technicians attempted to save life of a dying patient who had been suffering extensive rupture in the wall of one of her heart chambers causing internal bleeding and sending the 38 years old housewife to shock. Eventually the pale and exhausted woman was gasping for air at the emergency.

Knowing the risks of high incidence of fatality from such rare but extremely complex open heart surgery the chief cardiac surgeon Dr Luthfor Rahman of LABAID Cardiac Hospital assisted by his experienced team mates went ahead in a daring challenge to restore the woman's life.

Having studied for several hours the complex syndrome Ratna Rani Das had been surviving surgeons in the afternoon of last January 8 at the recently introduced modern cardiac hospital at Dhanmandi cut open her chest to find her heart's severed wall of one of the ventricular chambers that caused malfunctioning of the heart leading to irregular blood supply.

As the surgeons relentlessly worked to repair the ruptured wall with synthetic materials they found that the main wall between the two chambers (septum) had also suffered an unexplained split which also caused complications in her heart's usual functioning.

As the surgeons worked for about an hour and a half they also found that one of the main blood vessels that supplied blood to the heart had a blockade that denied access to normal flow of blood to Rani's heart.

Apparently, in a painstaking endeavour both the disorders in Rani's ventricular heart chambers were successfully repaired preventing future risk of malfunctioning. In fact, repairing of the disorder would prolong Rani's life as the complications has been removed.

"Accomplishing success on such critical disorder through surgery has been very rare in the global context. About 75 per cent of such complex surgeries end up unsuccessfully due to multiple problems; but today we made history achieving success," -- said the delighted surgeon Dr Luthfor Rahman.

"It took us hours of brainstorming and discussions among our team members on how to carry on the difficult surgery. Our mission was to save the patient although Rani's relatives believed there was very little chance of her survival," -- explained young surgeon Dr Luthfor Rahman who until now has performed over 800 open heart surgeries without any mortality.

A visibly emotional Janar Dhandas, Rani's husband who had been waiting anxiously outside the intensive care unit said, "It's a miracle! God has given back my wife's life and I will remain grateful to all the members of the team who operated on my wife."

"When we found her critically ill and gradually she was failing we assumed there was very little hope of survival,"said Dhandas, a small fish merchant from Daudkandi of Comilla.

When Rani had come to consult Dr Razia Sultana, a senior cardiologist at the LABAID Diagnostic Centre, she hardly had any serious complaints of chest pains. It appeared that Rani, despite having blockade in her heart's own blood vessel and malfunctioning heart chamber, never had been exposed to any life-threatening illness.

"It is incredible that when Rani had come to consult me at my chamber a week ago she did not have any serious symptoms of cardiac complications although before admission to the hospital I assumed that she was already suffering the damage which I believe went quite unnoticed," said Dr Razia Sultana.

Doctors believe Rani, who is now placed in the ICU of Lab Aid Cardiac Hospital would be ready to return home in a week's time.

The fact to be noticed is world class healthcare services are being provided at home now-a-days. So it would be an overindulgence to search it abroad ignoring our dignified physicians.