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Apollo Hospitals, Hyderguda successfully implanted the LVAD Heart Mate 3 to give a new lease of life for a 70-year-old heart failure patient.

Date: 4 Jan 18

The team of Dr. V. Surya Prakasa Rao, HOD, Cardiology; Dr. K. Venkat Reddy, Chief Cardiac Surgeon, and Dr. P. L. N. Kapardhi, at Apollo Hospitals, Hyderguda, performed a procedure using the most advanced Left ventricular assist device - "Left ventricular assist device" (LVAD HEART MATE 3).

The 70-year-old patient Mr. Syed Afsar Hassan, from Jubilee Hills, was a high-risk case, having undergone bypass surgery (CABG) for triple vessel block way back in 1995 in Germany. He had also been implanted with stents for the blocked surgical grafts in Germany. As recently as 2015, he had a stent implanted in left main coronary artery at Apollo Hospitals, Hyderguda, for a fresh heart attack. He was also suffering from diabetes and chronic kidney disease. Being a redo case, the risk of operative mortality and morbidity was pretty high. He was a sick patient who came with a complaint of severe breathlessness, unable to move or lie down.

The team had a challenge on hand as the patient was in an advanced age, sick and had several episodes of heart attacks, went into a heart failure and was getting into kidney failure too. Maximum medical management was attempted, with him not responding to any of the options and all efforts proved to be ineffective. He was given a device called CRT - D (Pacemaker like) to improve his heart failure, which showed partial improvement. The patient however was desiring a treatment which could give a better quality of life and enable him to pursue his business actively. The team explored the option of cardiac transplantation, but the patient's condition, associated medical co-morbidities and advanced age made him unfit for that too.

As the team had exhausted all options, they decided to opt for a relatively new procedure, with a mechanical heart called "Left ventricular assist device" (LVAD HEART MATE 3). This is the most advanced Left ventricular assist device available and functions on magnetic field, effecting higher revolutions or rotations. Blood clotting is almost negligible, thereby reducing the chances of stroke. Since the device was of lesser size, a relatively minimally invasive procedure was performed to implant it. This device did not need creation of pocket in the peritoneal cavity, unlike previous ones. The best part is that the unit has memory to adapt to the patient's parameters quickly.

Dr Venkat Reddy said "Patients of heart failure, those not fit for heart transplant, terminal heart patients and also those who had no other option, can immensely benefit from this procedure. It is essential to spread the message of this procedure being available for such patients, and that they no more need to lose hope."

Patient Mr. Hasan said "This is nothing less than a miracle, I was counting my days and never expected to recover so much. Today I am feeling excellent, I don't have any pain even that of an ant bite. I was in the last stage of heart failure and it was the indomitable spirit of team of Doctors here which saved me, they left no stone unturned, they kept trying various options to get my heart back to normal and they went to the extent as a last resort to attempt this procedure by getting the device not available here, from abroad. I had an option of going to Germany to get treated, but preferred Apollo, Hyderguda, as from my earlier experience, I found the cardiac team here extremely competent. My message to patients is not to panic, we have several options and above all India and Hyderabad in specific , offer excellent medical care and you need not go abroad. Apollo is totally professional, they have a skilled team of doctors and staff, who are committed and of course the good technology they have.

After a major and complicated surgery considering the patient's and advanced age, lasting over 12 hours, he was implanted with this life saving machine. He has since recovered, but will have to be on blood thinning medicines lifelong and needs regular medical checks. He can now lead a normal life, attend to his daily chores, take care of his Business and even travel, with some restrictions. There were two cases of LVAD done in the Telugu states prior to this. But the device used here is more sophisticated and was being implanted in a very sick patient of advanced age, whose chances of survival was bleak otherwise. The procedure was done by Dr. K. Venkat Reddy, Dr. Pradeep, Dr. Shyam and Dr. Rafieq, under the supervision of Dr. V. Surya Prakasa Rao, HOD, Cardiology.

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