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Maldivian boy with life-threatening cardiac problem returns home after being cured at Kochi hospital

When Kais was five months old, he was diagnosed with beta-thalassemia major. This is a serious condition where the body cannot synthesize normal hemoglobin mandating regular blood transfusions.

Published: 01st December 2021 07:43 PM  |   Last Updated: 01st December 2021 07:43 PM   |  A+A-

Kais and his mother along with doctors and hospital authorities including Dr Edwin Francis and Fr Paul Karedan at Lisie hospital on Tuesday (Photo | Special arrangement)

By Express News Service

KOCHI: Kais Bin Ahmed's parents, Ayaz and Mariam Nisha, were overjoyed when he was born in 2018 as the family's fourth child. He was a beacon of hope for the family because their older children had autism spectrum disorder, a developmental disease that impacts behaviour and speech. Their joy was crushed when he was diagnosed with a serious blood condition and a heart abnormality months after his birth. He was spared from a life-threatening cardiac problem, thanks to timely intervention by doctors at Lisie Hospital in Kochi.

When Kais was five months old, he was diagnosed with beta-thalassemia major. This is a serious condition where the body cannot synthesize normal hemoglobin mandating regular blood transfusions. It can cause major issues including early death. Adding to further woes, he was also diagnosed with a large atrial septal defect (a hole between the upper chambers of the heart).

Open-heart surgery was the only solution advised by the doctors who were consulted by his parents, as the hole was too big to be closed without surgery. But undergoing open-heart surgery with cardiopulmonary bypass could carry a very high risk in any person with beta-thalassemia major.

"It was very disheartening and disappointing when our treatment options were limited. But we did not lose hope and kept on knocking on the doors of expert doctors. That is when Dr Aishath Eleena, a pediatric cardiologist from the Maldives, suggested Lisie Hospital," said Kais's parents.

At the Lisie Hospital, he was re-assessed by the pediatric cardiology team led by Dr Edwin Francis. According to doctors, though the hole was very big and measured 3cm, and the child weighed only 14kg, it was still possible to close the defect without surgery. Kais underwent successful closure of the defect by keyhole procedure on October 26th and got discharged in November.

The team of doctors headed by Dr Edwin Francis along with Dr Annu Jose, Dr Bijesh V and pediatric cardiac anesthetists Dr Jesson Henry and Dr Divya Jacob assisted in the procedure.

On Tuesday, after reviews and checkups, Kais bid farewell to the hospital authorities. He was given a very warm adieu by the director of Lisie Hospital Fr Paul Karedan along with other staff and doctors.



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