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Army hospital getting ready to carry out intestine transplant

Rahul Singh, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, December 29, 2012
First Published: 00:53 IST(29/12/2012) | Last Updated: 00:55 IST(29/12/2012)

A military hospital here could soon become one of the few medical centres across the world where intestine transplants can be carried out.

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Two days after the Delhi gangrape survivor was airlifted to Singapore for advanced medical care, India's senior-most military doctor said on Friday the armed forces were awaiting clearance from the government for carrying out intestine transplants at the Army's Research and Referral (R&R) Hospital.

Air Marshal DP Joshi, who heads the Armed Forces Medical Services, said the R&R Hospital could undertake intestine transplants as early as next month, depending on the health ministry's clearance.

The ministry is expected to depute a team of experts to inspect the facilities at the hospital to carry out intestine transplants. If the procedure is successful, it will only be the first in the country, as the last few attempts by some private centres attempting intestinal transplants in the country have failed.

The rape victim, who was assaulted by six men in a moving bus on December 16, has had her stomach cut open twice and her small and large intestines have been removed. She is currently undergoing treatment at Singapore's Mount Elizabeth Hospital, one of Asia's best centres for organ transplants, but even they are not known for any successful intestinal transplant procedures.

The armed forces had launched the Armed Forces Organ Retrieval and Transplantation Authority a few years ago to generate awareness about organ donation. Several multi-organ transplants involving liver, kidney, heart, eyes, etc have been carried out the R&R hospital over the past five years.


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