Heart Truths

Todays TOI (Pune) features an article wherein cardiologists have reiterated that children born with certain types of heart defects can be cured.

Heart defects are of different types and this is not the place to go into their details. Suffice to say that timely diagnosis and treatment (usually surgery) can cure the child of his or her congenital heart defect (CHD). Modern diagnostic tests are highly advanced and new surgical techniques mean small babies can be cured of their problems. Indian hospitals and doctors now have necessary skills to treat our kids, there is no need to go abroad. There may be a minor residual scar but then kids often have scarred knees and elbows throughout their childhood. Financial aid is available as well for the needy.

The children go on to live perfectly normal healthy lives contributing actively to society, industry. No more medications are required. The only thing they have to be careful about is not to let their teeth fall prey to caries. If this does happen timely dental treatment is a must.

Madhubala is a famous Indian personality whose heart had a defect at birth but was not treated for a long time.
14 February is celebrated as World Congenital Heart Defects Day worldwide.

This is a good website for detailed information.

 This is horrific story describing parents attitude towards their children who have CHD: http://www.vancouversun.com/health/Indian+girls+denied+heart+surgery+parents/5444230/story.html

There are several organisations in India that counsel parents of children with CHD.
Best wishes,

CHD Awareness Week

14 February is all about Hearts so marking the day as “Congenital Heart Diseases Day” is only logical.
The Congenital Heart Information Network based USA in works extensively and tirelessly on CHD. As part of planning for CHD Awareness Week in 2010 and planning for the week in 2011, the organisation would like opinion on several issues about a CHD campaign. Those interested in helping sharpen focus of their work do fill out a questionnaire available at http://tinyurl.com/yly46g7.
It won’t take long.
Thank You!

Amazing Heart recovery

Hannah Clark of England is thought to be the only person in the world in whom her failing heart sufficiently recovered so that the transplanted heart could be removed. Read the story here and here. Professor Magdi Yacoub of Imperial College London and Hannah’s doctor since the begining has co-authored a report about this miracle in the Lancet journal.

Hannah developed a type of cancer due to drugs given to prevent her body from rejecting the transplanted heart. As the doctors changed medication plans her body responded with her own heart healing and recovering.

A Dream Come True

They say a person’s age should be judged by how long he lives on in people’s memory rather than how many years he/she spend on earth. In that case, Dr Nitu Mandke continues to live today via thousands of people he had operated upon. An excellent cardiac surgeon, it was indeed a cruel turn of fate due to which he succumbed to a heart attack in 2003. It was his dream to build a cardiac hospital in Mumbai. His untimely death only delayed this effort. The hospital was inaugurated on 26 January 2009 in Mumbai, much bigger than originally planned and inclusive of other specialities as well.

Dr Nitu Mandke completed his school and medical education at Pune. His family and friends organise a program on 31 January each year to commemorate his birthday. The simple program yesterday devoid of undue emotionalism was highly motivating. A fitting tribute to a great human being.
Key take aways:
Like its important to get a good teacher, a teacher too looks out for a good student
Dream big and then stay focussed on your goal
Work towards your target one step at a time
14 Feb is round the corner. It is the Congenital Heart Defects Day. Spend a few minutes learning about this condition. Some congenital heart defects are completely curable and children go on to live meaningful happy lives.

14 February – A Different View

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: