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Nigerian kid gets life saving surgery for rare heart disease in Kerala

In an act of kindness since the family could not bear the cost of the treatment, the surgery cost was borne by Aster Foundation.  

Published: 21st June 2022 10:15 PM  |   Last Updated: 21st June 2022 10:15 PM   |  A+A-

Ifain with his father Abiya and doctors who treated him at Aster Medcity, Kochi

Ifain with his father Abiya and doctors who treated him at Aster Medcity, Kochi. (Photo| Special Arrangement)

By Express News Service

KOCHI: For the last two years, the Nigerian couple Abiya and his wife Theresa were in despair. Their son Ifain Immanuel was suffering from a rare heart disease and lacking proper treatment facilities in Nigeria and they went through an ordeal of severe pain. 

They got their cheer back when their son was brought back to normal life through a surgery conducted in Kerala. The heart surgery of Ifain was successfully conducted at Aster Medcity in Kochi. In an act of kindness since the family could not bear the cost of the treatment, the surgery cost was borne by Aster Foundation.  

The Nigerian couple had noticed a change in skin colour when the baby was just a year old. Due to a decrease in oxygen level, he was very weak and further examination revealed that he was suffering from heart disease -- 'Tetralogy of Fallot'. Not being financially too well, the family could not afford to travel to another country seeking better treatment.

The couple were engaged in collecting and selling old clothes. Not being able to provide treatment, Ifain’s parents were in the dark. It was Abiya's sister who came to know about the charitable activities of Aster DM Healthcare.

She got in touch with the hospital through an e-mail to Dr Azad Moopen, chairman of Aster Healthcare, briefing about the disease and hardships faced by the family. Aster DM foundation, which provides free treatment for children who are financially backward families from India and Central Asia decided to treat the child.

Aster Sick Kids (ASK) Foundation took the initiative to bring the child and family to Aster Medcity for the surgery. The surgery was conducted by Dr Sajan Koshy, Senior Consultant Pediatric Cardiac Surgery.

"Tetralogy of Fallot is a common defect of the heart in children, where there is an obstruction to the outflow of the right ventricle. Managing the obstruction to the left ventricle was an additional challenge in this baby," said Dr Sajan Koshy.

However, after the successful surgery, Ifain was discharged on Thursday. After reviews, the family is set to fly back to Nigeria this week with a lot of good memories from Kerala.



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