TUMAKURU: Siddaganga Mutt pontiff Sri Shivakumara Swami (111), who was airlifted to a hospital in Chennai on Friday, will undergo a liver bypass surgery on Saturday as the stenting procedures have not helped contain the infection in his bile duct. Pre-surgical medical procedures are likely to be conducted early on Saturday.
According to Dr Parameshwarappa, director of the Siddaganaga Hospital and Research Centre, who accompanied the seer, the procedure will be conducted by liver transplant expert Dr Mohamed Rela of Dr Rela Insitute and Medical Centre, Chromepet, Chennai.
Sri Shivakumara Swami was airlifted by International Critical Air Transfer Team (ICATT), led by its director.
Dr Shalini Nalwad, from HAL airport in Bengaluru to Chennai on Friday afternoon. The doctors there have conducted certain tests and the seer is doing well, Dr Parameshwarappa added.
The chief of Medical Gastroenterology at BGS Gleneagles Global Hospitals in Kengeri, Bengaluru, Dr Ravindra B S, said that two years ago, Dr Rela had visited the pontiff at the mutt and had recommended stenting for clearing of the blockages. On his advice, the procedure was conducted as many as six times to implant 11 stents in all.
“The swamiji had withstood the stenting procedures and had recovered from illness for a couple of years. This time, the infection could not be contained through stenting and we managed to check it with antibiotics,” he explained.
He pointed out that if the surgery is not conducted, the seer would have to carry an external bag to help with the collection of the bile juice to contain the infection. But given his age, and also since the swamiji wanted to continue his routine of performing pujas, the bypass surgery is necessary, he added.
If the team of doctors and the Mutt authorities decide to go ahead with the surgery, Dr Rela will be setting a record of sorts. He had set a record by conducting a successful liver transplant on a five-day-old baby two decades ago. Now, he will be dealing with a 111-year-old saint.