Successful complex open heart surgery in a preterm baby

Successful complex open heart surgery in a preterm baby

* Vizag KIMS ICON doctors achieve rare feet
* Baby born with TAPVC, a heart condition
* Dr. Anil Kumar Dharmapuram team takes up surgery

 Visakhapatnam, 29th January 2024: A 34-week preterm baby girl, weighing only 1.3 kg, has undergone a successful complex open heart surgery in Visakhapatnam for the first time in the city’s history. The baby was one of the twins and was born prematurely at 32 weeks of pregnancy. 

While the boy twin was healthy, the girl developed breathing difficulties shortly after birth. She received critical medical care at Lotus Children Hospital in Vizag, under the supervision of the Chief Neonatalogist, Dr. Ganesh Sanku. At the time of her admission, the baby weighed only 1.2 kg.

During the cardiac evaluation of a premature neonate, conducted by Dr. Shanti Priya, a pediatric cardiologist from the Cuddles Unit of KIMS Hospital in Vizag, a rare congenital cardiac defect was discovered. This defect is known as Infra-diaphragmatic Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Connection (TAPVC).

 It is a complex condition where the pulmonary veins that carry pure blood from the lungs to the heart drain abnormally to the liver located below the heart. To plan for a major open-heart surgery in this neonate, it was necessary to wait until the 34th week of age, to ensure that the lungs have matured sufficiently.

The surgical team led by Dr. Anil Kumar Dharmapuram at the Cuddles unit of KIMS ICON Hospital performed an intra-cardiac repair of TAPVC on the baby. The procedure lasted for over eight hours and involved diverting and rerouting the pulmonary veins, which were draining abnormally to the liver, and the left side of the heart - the normal route.

Dr. R. Nagarajan, a pediatric cardiac anesthesiologist, managed the anesthesia during the operation while the neonatal team, led by Dr. Nikhil Thenneti & Dr. Santosh, successfully cared for the baby postoperatively in the neonatal ICU. It was a technical challenge for the surgeon to perform such a major open-heart surgery on a preterm baby weighing only 1.3 kg. The heart tissues were fragile and tender, making the procedure even more delicate. The anesthesia and intensive care required were equally challenging.

There is a high mortality rate in preterm small-weight babies worldwide who undergo complex cardiac surgery. However, one of the smallest-weight preterm babies in the Telugu states has successfully undergone the surgery with positive outcomes.

Following the surgery, the baby's condition remarkably improved in the neonatal unit. The baby resumed regular feeding and was discharged from the hospital in good health.

The family of the baby is overjoyed and grateful to the entire team of doctors who provided exceptional care for their child. The doctors, in turn, are grateful to the family for their cooperation and support throughout the baby's treatment.

KIMS-CUDDLES boasts of a comprehensive team of Pediatric cardiologist, Pediatric CTVS surgeons, Neonatalogists and Pediatric Intensivists providing care of highest standards in Vizag.

Over the years, 300+ Cardiac interventions are done and especially in the last one year 32 complex open heart surgeries are performed successfully. KIMS-CUDDLES has been a Go-to hospital for children with heart problems in vizag.