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Thursday, Oct 17, 2019

Nawaz Sharif suffering from heart, kidney problems, must be shifted to hospital: Doctors

A team of doctors carried out a detailed medical check-up of former Pakistan prime minister Nawaz Sharif after he complained of chest pain and hypertension on Sunday night.

world Updated: Jul 23, 2018 11:45 IST
Imtiaz Ahmad
Imtiaz Ahmad
Hindustan Times, Islamabad
Ousted Pakistani prime minister Nawaz Sharif looks on as he attends a seminar in Islamabad.
Ousted Pakistani prime minister Nawaz Sharif looks on as he attends a seminar in Islamabad. (AFP File Photo)

Ousted Pakistan prime minister Nawaz Sharif, who is in a prison on corruption charges, is suffering from heart and kidney problems and must be immediately transferred to a hospital from Adiala Jail in Rawalpindi, doctors have said.

A team of doctors from the military-run Rawalpindi Institute of Cardiology, headed by its major general (retd) Dr Azhar Mehmood Kayani, carried out a detailed medical check-up of Sharif after he complained of chest pain and hypertension on Sunday night.

The doctors said the condition of Sharif, who is Adiala Jail for the last ten days, has taken a turn for the worse. They said the water level in Sharif’s body is very low, which has made his heartbeat erratic. The amount of urea in his blood has also become very high and could even lead to kidney failure.

Dr Kayani said in his report that the former prime minister should be shifted to a hospital as the jail does not have the necessary medical facilities required to treat his condition.

However, jail authorities said the 68-year-old would be examined again on Monday before any decision is taken to move him.

Sharif’s condition was first highlighted by Dr Adnan, his personal physician who has seen him twice in the past week. Dr Adnan was allowed to visit Sharif only after media reports highlighted the alleged poor conditions in which the former prime minister was being kept.

Sharif was examined by Dr Adnan after he was perspiring profusely during the meeting with his lawyers on Saturday. The team of doctors from the Rawalpindi Institute of Cardiology was called after Dr Adnan insisted on a second opinion.

Dr Adnan said Sharif has a long history of heart problems and undergone two medical procedures, including a bypass surgery. Sharif also suffers from hypertension, associated sub-normal kidney function, and other complications.

Caretaker provincial ministers Shaukat Javed and Ahmed Waqas Riaz said the jail superintendent has been informed about Sharif’s health issues and the home department has formed a medical board which will perform another checkup on Monday to decide on whether to shift him to a hospital.

They confirmed that Sharif’s medical tests suggested he had kidney issues. The caretaker government is in touch with jail authorities and Sharif is getting better medical facilities, they added.

Officials of the Punjab prisons department said they are waiting for the orders from the province’s home department about shifting Sharif to the hospital.

Sharif’s Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) party leaders have said that doctors, who examined Sharif at Adiala Jail, knew about his critical condition, including the heart disease, and that the current weather – fluctuating between extreme humidity and heat – was inevitably going to affect his health adversely.

They accused that jail authorities chose not to provide him with an air conditioner that was “so necessary because of his heart condition”.

The caretaker government has been criticised for the way it has handled Sharif’s detention.

Sharif and his daughter Maryam, 44, were arrested in Lahore on July 13 on their arrival from London after an accountability court found them guilty over his family’s ownership of four luxury flats in London. Both Sharif and Maryam have been sentenced to 10 and 7 years in prison.

The chief commissioner office issued a notification on the same day that Sharif and Maryam would be kept in Sihala Police Training College Rest House in Islamabad. However, the notification was later withdrawn.

It stated in another notification that only Maryam would be kept in the rest house and Sharif would be taken to Adiala Jail, only to withdraw it. Yet another notification was issued early on Saturday, stating that both Nawaz and Maryam would be kept in Adiala Jail.

Reports that the authorities had decided to send Maryam to Sihala guest house surfaced again. However, this decision was “postponed” reportedly after she refused to be shifted to the guest house, saying she wanted to stay where she was.

First Published: Jul 23, 2018 11:45 IST

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