A 9-year-old Pushkaraj Salunkhe who weights 18kgs from Solapur was treated successfully for having an Atrial septal defect and complete heart block by Doctors at Wockhardt Hospital, Mumbai Central for the first time in India. An atrial septal defect (ASD), a hole in the wall between the two upper chambers of your heart (atria). In addition to that he had complete heart block- his heart’s natural pacemaker could not generate enough activity for normal functioning of the heart at rest and during activities, this predisposes to sudden death as the heart rate may drop way below the normal level.
Childhood is the golden period of life. But, 9-year-old Pushkaraj, who is a resident of Solapur was living with a hole in his heart and heart rate which was way below the normal for his age, his life was complicated. He couldn’t go to school regularly like other kids, or play with his friends or neither could he do his daily chores with ease. Pushkaraj would experience shortness of breath even if he would just walk for a short distance. He would often feel fatigued, would suddenly become unconscious, and was dependent on his parents. His quality of life deteriorated and his parents were worried. He was diagnosed with the condition while he was toddler But, due to the lack of funds, they couldn’t opt for his treatment. His father ran from pillar to the post, but couldn’t succeed in helping his son, live life the way he wants to.
But tables turned in 2019, when Wockhardt hospital set a free camp in the month of January. Fortunately, the boy with his family attended the camp and was evaluated and screened. It was the need of the hour to treat him as if left untreated over the period of time, his heart was showing signs of failure and there would be an increased risk of sudden cardiac death. Then, the boy with his family was asked to visit Wockhardt hospital in Mumbai Central, in the month of March, 2019. The hospital arranged for the funds for his treatment.
Dr. Manish Chokhandre, Pediatric Cardiologist, Wockhardt Hospital, Mumbai Central, says “With the help of a closure device, the defect or an opening between the right and left sides of the heart was closed. Also, a dual chamber permanent pacemaker was fit, and both the procedures were done in one sitting in this pediatric patient. With pacemaker implanted he can do his activity as his heart rate will respond appropriately to his activity and prevent it from going below the dangerous level. He improved immediately post procedure. It is a rare occurrence that both the procedures (ASD closure and permanent pacemaker implantation) were carried out simultaneously in a pediatric patient. Now, he is fine and his quality of life has improved significantly.”
“The condition is present since birth (congenital). The ASD occurs when the baby’s wall does not form properly during pregnancy. But, with the help of device closure and a dual chamber pacemaker implantation, in one sitting, Pushkaraj is fine now, and will be going to school regularly.”says Dr. Manish.
Pushkaraj’s father says, “We couldn’t afford to carry out my son’s treatment due to the financial crisis. But, Wockhardt hospital helped Pushkaraj get back on track. He has started playing with his friends, and will also go to school regularly. I am happy to see my son become independent, and I thank the hospital for their endless efforts.”