A true story of Mohammed H and his mitral valve repair surgery:
14 year old Mohammed H had difficulty playing football with his friends. The teachers in school also restricted his activities as his heart had a problem with one of its valves. Whenever the parents took him to a doctor, he was advised to be on medicines till he grew old enough to have the valve in his left ventricle replaced. Their silent hope was that God would hear their prayers and heal his heart with medicines.
The boy grew older and was having increasing difficulty in even walking all the way to school. That was when he was referred finally for surgery. During the time that they had waited, the expertise to repair his heart had developed in this part of the country.
When he spoke about his going for his “Heart Operation” to his friends, he was considered a hero.
He felt great, until a girl in his class asked him innocently “what if you don’t come back?”
On admission a visibly shaken Mohammed H was examined, by one doctor after another. Several investigations to evaluate his heart were underway. His parents put up a brave face during the entire time. When the decision to operate was taken, Mohammed H and his parents were taken aside and counseled. They know the adverse effects of a artificial valve in the young boys heart and requested for a repair only if possible. We promised to do our best as we also felt similarly. We spoke to Mohammed H and got his assurance for cooperation with the bright chance of a normal life after surgery.
After a long and challenging day in the OR, The doctors said “The operation was uneventful. We are hopeful of a good outcome.” He recovered within a day. His native mitral valve, which had been severely leaking, had been repaired. It is more than 3 years after the operation and his health is as normal as it can get.
It is such results that have put India on the map of the world as one of the best places for heart surgery both in adults and in children. With death rates after surgery of less than 3 %, the Doctors and Nurses in India can hold their heads high.