Aorta replaced without open heart surgery at GH

Chennai: When milkman Radhakrishnan (69), a resident of Thiruporur had severe narrowing of aortic valve, little did he know that he cannot undergo open heart surgery due to his asthmatic condition. However, doctors of Rajiv Gandhi Government General Hospital (RGGGH) performed transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) to cure him.

The surgery replaces the valve without requiring the need to open the heart and is done through pinhole method by inserting from patient’s thigh.

Explaining about the method, a press release from the hospital, said, “A catheter mounted prosthetic valve is introduced and implanted within the damaged valve and stretched with a balloon. Patients with high risk for anesthesia and open-heart surgery will benefit from this procedure. At present around 10 lakh people suffer from this condition in India.”

Cardiologists Dr G Gnanavelu, Dr N Swaminathan, Dr Cecily Mary Majella and Dr G Ravishankar led the procedure and an indigenously manufactured valve was implanted on the patient.

The surgery was completed in 40 minutes and was done by administering local anesthesia with sedation. However, the procedure, at present, is not insured under Chief Minister’s Comprehensive Health Insurance Scheme (CMCHIS) and the press release quoted, “Steps are already taken to include it in the scheme.”

NT Bureau