Doctors at Jaslok Hospital replaced a blocked aortic valve in former mayor and speaker of legislative assembly Dattaji Nalawade’s heart without performing an open-heart surgery, on Thursday.
While the procedure, Transcutaneous Aortic Valve Implantation (TAVI), has been performed in India earlier, doctors claimed that this is the first time it was performed in Mumbai.
Nalawade, 76, who was hospitalised in February following a cardiac arrest, suffered from renal failure, diabetes, and lung disease.
Doctors diagnosed him with aortic valve stenosis, in which the aortic valve that controls the blood flow from the heart to the body, calcifies and narrows down.
“We discussed TAVI procedure, but the Drug Controller General of India objected to importing it,” said Dr Ashwin Mehta, director of cardiology. The valve, imported from the US, was not approved for use in India. “Finally we got permission to import the valve on compassionate grounds,” said Dr Mehta.
“In the long term, there will be problems. There have been cases of leak in the artery. The best choice is still an open heart surgery,” said Dr Hasmukh Rawat, consulting cardiologist, Fortis Hospital, Mulund.