NEW DELHI: Shivangini Gohain, the 12-year-old Assam archer who was injured when an arrow shot accidentally during a training session pierced her collarbone, underwent surgery on Friday and a 15-cm part of the metal rod was removed from her body.
A senior doctor at the AIIMS trauma centre said Gohain, who had been brought here from Dibrugarh in Assam on Thursday night, was stable after the "complex surgery".
The arrow had pierced her collarbone and damaged part of the neck, vertebra and the left lung.
Gohain after the surgery has now been shifted to the ICU for observation.
Dr Deepak Gupta, professor of neurosurgery at AIIMS who led the team which operated upon the girl said medical evaluation with CT scan and angiography showed that the arrow was stuck in the cervical spine vertebrae in close relation to the spinal cord and major vessels.
The arrow, he explained, was touching the vertebral artery which supplies blood to the brain stem.
About 15 cm of the arrow was removed during the surgery which lasted around four hours.
"Around 0.5 cm of the arrow was in front of the spinal cord. It was a challenging case considering the age of the child. The aluminium carbon alloy arrow had penetrated through the neck from the right side, grazed the vertebral artery on the right side, went through vertebral body and intervertebral disc to the opposite side up to the left lung," Dr Gupta explained.
Gohain, who was airlifted from Assam and brought to the AIIMS Trauma Centre around 8 pm on Thursday after an attempt to remove the arrow at a hospital in Assam failed.
She was training at the Dakha Devi Rasiwasia College at Chabua on Wednesday when the incident took place.
Dakha Devi Rasiwasia College serves as an extension centre under the Sports Authority of India (SAI) Regional Centre in Guwahati.
According to the state's archery association, she was training unsupervised and the mishap was a result of negligence by the local coach and officials.
Pulin Das, a joint secretary of Assam Archery Association and executive member of the state Olympic association, said the schoolgirl from the Deodhai village, about three kilometres from Chabua, was injured as the trainees were practising without any coach and other officials.
"There is an SAI contractual coach, Marcy, and he has left for the Khelo India Games in Guwahati.
He didn't instruct the trainees to stop the camp for some time nor did the college principal, who acted as administrator of the extension centre, looked after the practice," Das told PTI over the phone on Friday.
The extension centre has 11 trainees, six boys and five girls, and they were training under SAI contractual coach AC Marcy from Nagaland, who is in Guwahati for the Khelo India Youth Games.
Das said Gohain was struck by an arrow shot by boys doing practice.
The arrow remained stuck for more more than a day before she was airlifted to New Delhi on Thursday night. Gohain's father Brinchi Gohain was outside the practice area.
With no official of the college and SAI coming for help, she was taken to Assam Medical College in Dibrugarh, 33 km from Chabua.
"I was told that she had a very tough time as the arrow remained stuck for more than a day. She is a strong-willed girl and she fought. Her father must be a daily wage labourer and he was distraught also," Das said.
The SAI said that it will bear all the expenses of her treatment.
The Assam Archery Association has contributed Rs 20,000 towards her treatment.