Rare Heart surgery conducted successfully on 11-year-old girl with congenital heart disease in Navi Mumbai

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Navi Mumbai – Considering a birth prevalence of congenital heart disease as 9/1000, the estimated number of children born with congenital heart disease in India is more than 200,000 per year. Of these, about one-fifth are likely to have serious defects, requiring an intervention in the first year of life. Challenges to pediatric cardiac care include financial constraints, health-seeking behavior of community, and lack of awareness.

11 year old girl (Supriya Birmole) from Parbhani district can’t attend school regularly due to congenital heart disease, Supriya’s movements were very slow and she used to get tired after walking or working. Supriya’s family is below the poverty line so she has not received any treatment for her heart disease. For the past six months, her condition has been deteriorating and relatives from the Birmole family have admitted her to Terna Specialty Hospital and Research Centre in Nerul.

Supriya’s treatment started under the supervision of Dr. Bhushan Chavan, a renowned paediatric cardiac surgeon from Navi Mumbai and Thane. Giving more information about this, Dr. Bhushan Chavan, Paediatric Cardiology Surgeon, Terna Specialty Hospital & Research centre, said, “There is a blood vessel connecting the two blood vessels coming out of the heart. This blood vessel is present in every infant in the mother’s womb, but it closes after birth, but in supriya’s case connection remains opened, and it’s referred to as a patent ductus arteriosus (PDA).The abnormal opening causes too much blood to flow to the baby’s lungs and heart. A small patent ductus arteriosus often doesn’t cause problems and might never require treatment. However, a large patent ductus arteriosus left untreated can allow poorly oxygenated blood to flow in the wrong direction, weakening the heart muscle and causing heart failure and other complications, in Supriya’s case there was large PDA which was never treated till at the age of 11. Considering Supriya’s age, we decided to perform this device procedure without open heart surgery. In this, a catheter is inserted from the thigh to the inside of the heart and the PDA is closed by an umbrella device through this catheter. The PDA device was inserted into the heart with the help of a long tube through a hole in her leg.”

Giving more information about this rare surgery, Dr. Bhushan Chavan added that in all these procedures, I also want to thank nature because despite having congenital heart disease, we were able to make this surgery a success at the age of eleven. It is really amazing because such a disease is difficult to perform after a certain age. The size of the PDA in this case was one centimetre and this condition is very rare but the positive condition of Supriya’s lungs made it easier for us to perform this surgery. Now, Supriya’s health has improved and she has been sent home in 4 days. Considered difficult, Dr. Bhushan Chavan has already given life to many young children in rural areas of Maharashtra at Terna Specialty Hospital & Research Centre. Supriya was having a hard time getting to school due to ill health but now she can go to school regularly. This surgery has been done under Mahatma Jyotiba Phule Jan Swasthya Yojana implemented by the Government of Maharashtra. According to the National Family Health Survey, the infant mortality rate (IMR) in India stands at 34 per 1000 live births. About 10% of these infant deaths can be attributed to congenital heart diseases (CHD) alone.

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