As people in their hordes hit the streets of Delhi to vent grief and anger over the brutal gang-rape of a 23-year-old woman on last Sunday, a city hospital Friday offered the victim free intestinal transplant.
The private Sir Ganga Ram Hospital in central Delhi has also offered to bear the cost of all subsequent treatment.
DS Rana, chairman (board of management), Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, has communicated this offer to BD Nathani, medical superintendent of Safdarjung Hospital, where the woman is currently being treated.
Doctors treating the woman said on Thursday their focus was on providing her the best treatment as her life was at grave risk. She underwent surgery to remove a gangrenous section of intestine, and there was risk of infection.
"Moved by the plight of the young intern at a private hospital in the city, who was training to be a physiotherapist, we have offered her free treatment. Sir Ganga Ram Hospital has performed India's first and only living donor intestinal transplant which has been reported in a peer reviewed journal this year," Rana said.
Samiran Nundy, chairman, department of surgical gastroenterology and organ transplantation at Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, said intestinal transplant is the only course of treatment that would offer the victim the chance of a functional intestines.
Doctors said an intestinal graft could be obtained either from a brain-dead donor or from a living related donor.
"Transplant can be life-saving in patients with intestinal failure and failure of parenteral nutrition. However, getting an organ from a deceased donor is hard in India. The living donor option also has a few advantages. Both these options could be available for the victim once her condition stabilises," said Naimish Mehta, transplant surgeon at Sir Ganga Ram Hospital.
Mehta added: "In a normal individual, the length of the small intestine is approximately 600 cm, of which 200 cm of intestine can be removed for transplantation without any adverse effect on the living donor. In contrast, whole of the intestine from the brain-dead donor can be used for intestinal transplantation."
The gang-rape occurred on Sunday night after the woman and her male friend boarded a private bus in south Delhi to go home after watching a movie.
The young woman was brutally assaulted in the moving bus. Her male friend who tried to save her also was beaten up by the rapists.
Both were dumped by the roadside near the domestic airport after some 40 minutes of ordeal.