In what may be termed a medical miracle, a religious preacher survived a bullet through his brain after surgeons at Apollo hospital repaired extensive damage to his skull and brain tissue.
Religious preacher Hakim Singh, 50, was reciting out of a religious text when enthusiastic devotees fired in the air during a ceremony in Jhansi on January 10.
“The proclamation of the ‘birth of Lord Krishna’ during Srimad Bhagwat katha-vachan on January 10 was cheered by people firing in the air. One of the bullets hit my father in the head. First we took him to a hospital in Jhansi, then to Gwalior, from where he was referred to Delhi,” said Singh’s son Abhay Prakash Singh, who takes tuition classes in Kanpur Dehat district.
In Delhi, Singh was initially taken to AllIMS Trauma Centre on January 11 but could not be admitted there due to lack of bed. He was then admitted to Apollo hospital in a critical state the same day.
The bullet, according to the doctors, had entered the head from the right side and exited from left. The CT scan of the head revealed extensive brain injury with depressed fracture in frontal region as the bone was broken at multiple places. The damage to the brain was severe as the right frontal lobe had multiple pieces of bone inside with numerous cerebral contusions (bruise of the brain tissue).
“The long (13 mm) tear in the superior sagittal sinus, the main blood vessel, of the patient caused heavy bleeding. The tear was repaired through five-hour long surgery and four units of blood transfusion were given to the patient during and after the surgery,” said Dr Pranav Kumar, senior consultant, neurology, Indraprastha Apollo hospital.
“His speech is not normal but it will better in due course of time. He can comprehend things but words formation is a problem now. There is a risk of getting seizures, so he’ll be on anticonvulsant and other supportive medications for at least two years,” the doctor said.
Singh was discharged from the hospital three weeks after the surgery. The family spent `15 lakh on his treatment.
“We took loan from at least 10-15 relatives. We also mortagaged our house and agricultural land to arrange the money for treatment,” said his son Abhay Prakash.
“He regained consciousness only after the surgery and the first thing he uttered was ‘Arey Ram’,” Abhay said.