The 24-day-old infant, a girl, was born in Kheralu in Mehsana, with Patent Ductus Arteriosus (PDA), a heart defect. Because of the condition, the ductus arteriosus, which normally closes at birth, stays open. As a result, instead of the blood circulating into the body, the blood goes back to the lungs.
The infant suffered from apnea and suddenly stopped breathing and was evaluated by Dr. Divyesh Sadadiwala, CIMS Paediatric Cardiologist, who referred her for surgery.
“PDA ligation is the surgery required to correct the defect, but it was highly risky in this case due to multiple factors. The baby had a premature birth and had low weight. She had a high creatinine level indicating impaired kidney function. Plus, there was some evidence of infection. Moreover, the baby was extremely fragile because of low birth weight. Still, we decided to go ahead with PDA ligation surgery as it was the only option,” said Dr. Shaunak Shah, Paediatric Cardiac Surgeon at CIMS hospital.
He said the baby successfully underwent the PDA ligation surgery on Saturday. CIMS Anaesthesia Team led by Dr Niren Bhavsar, Dr. Hiren Dholakia, Dr. Chintan Sheth and CIMS Neonatal and Paediatric Intensivist, Dr Amit Chitaliya were also a part of the team that performed the successful surgery on the neonate, who is now recovering.
“The neonate was the lowest-weighing baby we have operated on at CIMS, and probably one of the smallest, if not the smallest in Gujarat to have undergone cardiac surgery,” he said.
In addition to the above challenges, children with low birth weight are also prone to hypothermia, i.e., a sudden drop in temperature. The team did not switch on the air conditioner during the surgery. Moreover, the baby was operated on an infant warmer.
“These were additional challenges, but we were able to overcome them because of team effort and the support system. Also, a special mention for CIMS Foundation which has supported and helped neonate patients for such lifesaving surgeries in the past” he added.