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East India Gets Its First Heart Transplant in Kolkata, Green Corridor for Organ Flown in From Bengaluru

The heart for Dilchand Singh was harvested from Bengaluru after a 21-year-old man there met with an accident and was declared brain dead by doctors on Saturday. The heart was transported from Bengaluru to the hospital in Kolkata in record time, thanks to the efforts of authorities in multiple states.

Sujit Nath | News18

Updated:May 21, 2018, 11:40 PM IST
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East India Gets Its First Heart Transplant in Kolkata, Green Corridor for Organ Flown in From Bengaluru
Image for representation. (Image: Reuters)
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Kolkata: A 39-year-old man from Jharkhand suffering from Dilated Cardiomyopathy (DCM), which affects the heart’s ability to pump blood, underwent a heart transplant at a private hospital in Kolkata, a first in the eastern part of the country.

The heart for Dilchand Singh was harvested from Bengaluru after a 21-year-old man there met with an accident and was declared brain dead by doctors on Saturday. The heart was transported from Bengaluru to the hospital in Kolkata in record time, thanks to the efforts of authorities in multiple states.

The harvested heart was transported to Fortis Hospital adjacent to EM Bypass from Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose International Airport in an ambulance, which covered a distance of about 18 kilometers in just 22 minutes during rush hour traffic on a green corridor opened by the Police. It usually takes between 50 minutes and an hour to cover that distance.

The donor, 21-year-old Varun BK, had met with a road accident and was being treated at Sparsh Super Specialty Hospital in Bengaluru. On May 19, the doctors declared him brain dead. His family members agreed to donate his heart.

The hospital authorities, through their own network chain, began looking for a recipient and contacted Fortis Hospital in Chennai who, in turn, informed that a patient at the Kolkata Fortis unit was urgently in need of a transplant.

Singh was admitted at Kolkata Fortis for the last one month and had requisitioned for a transplant back in 2016. His blood group (A+) matched with that of the donor. He suffered from DCM, which is when the heart's ability to pump blood is lessened because its main pumping chamber, the left ventricle, is enlarged and weakened.

In some cases, this prevents the heart from filling with blood as it should. Over time, it can affect the other chambers too.

On Sunday, officials at Bengaluru, Kolkata, Chennai and Ranchi completed the legal formalities, so that the heart could reach the recipient at the earliest.

The surgery was conducted by Dr KM Mandana and Dr Tapas Raychaudhury, both renowned Cardio-Thoracic surgeons. Currently, the patient is under observation.

Aditi Kishore Sarkar, state organ donation nodal officer, said, “It was an outstanding performance by all involved in this marathon task. Similar attempts were made in past but they weren’t as successful due to various reasons.”​

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| Edited by: Ahona Sengupta
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