14th February is the ‘The Congenital Heart Defect Awareness’ Day.
India has seen huge progress in treatment for babies born with some anamolies in the structure of their hearts. Some are minor (hole in the heart) but some can be very severe and life threatening. Earlier, those who could afford went abroad for treatment. Things gradually improved and in the eighties diagnostic equipment and surgery was possible in few metros.
Soon highly qualified surgeons who had trained abroad began to return and work here. Improvements in infrastructure went in tandem and now we have specialised paediatric cardiologist and paediatric cardiac surgeons in smaller towns as well. Neonatal diagnosis by various imaging techniques is also possible.
Late Dr Nitu Mandke was a pioneer in paediatric cardiac surgery in Mumbai and a great human being. He is no more but his legacy lives on via the hundreds of hearts he has mended.
Work in this field steams ahead as India now has babies coming in from abroad for their treatment. This 14th February, spend some time to read something different. Papers always carry appeals for aid for congential heart surgery. If you do not wish to contribute any Vitamin M, then spend some time volunteering. Bring a Smile.
Here are a few links: