The wife of a police inspector from Nagpada, a senior citizen from Vile Parle and a hawker from Navi Mumbai together created history after their families donated their organs on Friday – the highest number of cadaver donations in the city in a day. The organs from their bodies helped six patients suffering from end-stage organ failure.
Five hospitals, seven transplant coordinators and more than 30 surgeons in the city worked tirelessly to retrieve, transport and transplant the donated organs. The liver from an 80-year-old woman from Vile Parle was transplanted to a 58-year-old man from Pune. The liver from a 52-year-old woman, who was admitted at Nanavati Hospital in Vile Parle, was taken to Fortis Hospital in Mulund where a 39-year-old man received the transplant.
The third donor, Gangadhar Swain, 38, was a hawker, who sold odd items in slums. He was hit by a truck while he travelling on his bike last Wednesday and was being treated at MGM Hospital, Vashi. PK Sashanker, the hospital’s administrator, said the donor’s wife Manorama was inconsolable as her husband was declared brain-dead, but still consented to donate his organs. “Initially, he was taken to Unnati Hospital, Panvel where he was intubated and ventilated. He had developed brain haemorrhage (bleeding of the blood vessels in the brain) and swelling,” said Shahanker, adding tthe family was originally from Odisha and had moved to Panvel.
Swain’s heart was retrieved at the Vashi hospital and within 14 minutes it was transported through a 19km green corridor to Mulund. The heart was given to a 36-year-old man from Lonavala, who had dilated cardiomyopathy, a condition where the heart is too big to pump blood efficiently. Swain’s liver was sent to Global Hospital, Parel, where it was transplanted to a 50-year-old woman. One of his kidneys was transplanted to a 38-year-old man admitted at MGM Hospital and the other kidney saved the life of a 25-year-old woman admitted at Nair Hospital, Mumbai Central.
Mumbai’s cadaver donation programme has gained momentum this year, said experts. Last year, 42 cadaver donations were recorded in the city. After the three donations on Friday, the number of cadaver donors this year has reached 10. “If we continue at this pace, we will cross last year’s donations. There is an increased awareness in the community and at the same time hospitals are also identifying potential donors,” said Dr Gustad Daver, president of Zonal Transplant Coordination Committee, the agency that allocates donated organs in the city.
Daver said public hospitals should start performing transplants and identifying donors to promote the programme further.
(With inputs from GM Jeddy)