A day after he was reinstated as director of the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), Dr P Venugopal led a team of surgeons that stitched a hole in the heart of a one-year-old boy, said Dr AK Bisoi, who did the surgery with him.
Dr Venugopal is now the oldest surgeon to perform an operation at AIIMS.
The surgery — which lasted a little over 30 minutes — will help infant George Sajeed from Pakistan’s Kasur district lead a normal life. Sajeed suffered from pulmonary arterial hypertension and weighed a mere 7 kg — a little more than half his ideal weight of 12-13 kg. His body had started turning blue and needed immediate treatment.
“Ideally, the measure of pulmonary hypertension should be one-fifth of the body’s blood pressure, but in this child, it was equal to his blood pressure, which is very dangerous,” said Dr Bisoi, an associate professor at AIIMS’s department of cardio-thoracic and vascular surgery.
“The boy’s heart condition lead to his lungs getting flooded with excess blood, causing pneumonia repeatedly,” he added.
While Dr Venugopal was unavailable for comment, Dr Bisoi said he would continue his 14-year professional association with the reinstated director of AIIMS. “It’s up to Dr Venugopal if he wants to scrub (do surgeries) with me still. But he is more into administrative work now.”