Who was the first person to perform a heart transplant?
A rare moment where hearts and minds come together to save a life: Everyone has special moments in life. 28th of February 2015 is a one of those rare moments for me and my team. In a country like India, where we hear most people complaining and cribbing about other’s selfishness, nearly 400-500 people have put their hearts and minds together to save life of a simple housewife and wife of an ordinary teacher.
First Heart Transplant by Dr Gokhale
Yesterday at 3.30 am , I got a call from Dr Swarnalata, in-charge of Jeevandan scheme of Governments of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh, informing that there is a 30 year old brain dead person at Victoria hospital, Bangalore and the family is willing to donate organs. His blood group is O+ and there are no takers for it in Karnataka. She asked me – do I have any patient waiting for heart transplantation who can be saved by this donor from Bangalore and the liver team there wants to take the organs around 9am.
I have a lady waiting for heart transplant for damaged heart. Time is short and I had to give a few frantic calls to the administrators at Yashoda hospital, call my staff to accompany me to Bangalore, book flight tickets to bangalore ,find a company to give a chartered flight and call a friend in GMR group to help us board the Indigo flight at 7am with all surgical instruments. With lots of help from GMR and Indigo airlines staff, we could board the flight at last minute.
We harvested the heart at Victoria hospital from the donor and we had to put it in the patient in 4 hours time. Bangalore police have done a superb job by creating a green corridor and with one senior police officer in the pilot car and hundreds of traffic police clearing the road, we reached HAL airport in the middle of city in 15 minutes time covering nearly 20km. This takes nearly one to one and half hours usually. The chartered jet flight is ready with engines clicking and we were in the air in a few minutes reaching begumpet airport in 55 minutes. More than a hundred of Hyderabad police created a green corridor from airport to Yashoda hospital, Secunderabad, enabling us to reach in 3 minutes from airport.
With so much help from everyone, we could complete the heart transplantation in three hours and forty minutes, just before the dead line. Now patient is on the road to recovery.
It is fascinating that so many people including donor family,the transplant organizations, hospitals, doctors, police and administrators come together without borders to save a life.
Hat’s off to humanity.
Dr A.G.K. GOKHALE, MS,MCH(Vellore), DNB.SMP-IIM ( Kolkota )
Emergency Number(s): 9603040506
Contact Number(s): 91-40-2360 7777 / 5555 / 2000
Web Site: www.drgokhale.com