The liver transplant team at Gurgaon's Medanta Hospital created history of sorts by performing a chain of six liver transplants simultaneously on three children.
Tejashree Ramanathan, 3, Anish Kakroo, 1 year 11 months old and Ansa Munshi, 1 year 10 months old, were three strangers united by the common destiny for the need of liver transplant to survive.
Tejashree was suffering from a genetic disorder where the liver lacks a particular enzyme. Anish and Ansa had a congenital defect called biliary atresia, where the bile duct is missing.
The surgeries that were performed at the hospital on December 25, took 20 hours, a team of 110 medical staff members, including 30 surgeons and six operation theatres.
Two of the liver transplants were swap surgeries, wherein Tejashree's father donated a part of his liver to Ansa, and vice-versa. The liver donation had to be swapped because the blood groups of both the children did not match their father's and the mothers were unfit to donate. There was also a domino transplant, wherein a part of Tejashree's old liver was transplanted into Anish's.
Dr AS Soin, chairman, Medanta Liver institute, who led the team, said, "This surgery is the world's first transplant chain and it was like a rocket launch with prior allocation of time and target-bound responsibilities to the individual team members. We had started at 4am and got over only after midnight." "All of them were struggling for liver donors and it just clicked us that they could be of help to each other," said Dr Neelam Mohan, paediatric liver specialist, Medanta.
The case is unique because the surgeries were linked to one another. If any one of the surgeries would have failed, the entire chain would have been broken, risking lives of all the three children.