CHENNAI: After his major organs were badly affected by a hit-and-run, doctors at the Institute for Child Health (ICH) did a strenuous surgery on a one-year-old boy and managed to save him. Gowtham, son of two daily wage labourers from Tiruverkadu, suffered severe trauma after he was run over by a school van while playing outside his house, on February 2.
He was hospitalised in bad shape with very little respiratory effort. “We stabilised his condition, but the CT scan showed that it was a lot worse,” recalls Dr Mohana Vel, chief of surgical unit at ICH. His internal organs were severely damaged and moved across his thoracic cavity. “The left side of his diaphragm was torn and his intestines and spleen had pushed themselves up into the thoracic cavity. This caused his heart to move to the right side of his body. His spleen was completely damaged and his left kidney was crushed beyond measure,” said the doctor.
Four surgeons managed to keep him alive till they did a laparotomy in which they moved the intestines back into the abdomen. “Next, we repaired the tear. However, since his spleen could not be salvaged, we had to remove it,” said a surgeon. The doctors then moved Gowtham to the intensive care unit, where within four days he developed sepsis.
Eventually, the child’s condition improved and he was discharged from the hospital in the first week of March. “His left kidney has been left inside his body since it may cause problems if we try to remove it. Gowtham will be brought for regular follow up so that we can ensure that he will not contract any infections or develop hypertension in the future,” said the surgeon.