This 87-year-Old has a Heart of Steel
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09 February 2009
By Ranjani Rajendra
After A Bypass And Six Angioplasties, South Mumbai Businessman Now Carries 12 Stents
South Mumbai businessman Mahesh Ganguly has an unusual claim to fame as compared to other heart patients across the country. The 87–year–old has undergone a cardiac bypass surgery and six angioplasties subsequently, carrying 12 stents in his heart now.
On Saturday, Ganguly (name changed) underwent his sixth angioplasty at Bombay Hospital in New Marine Lines, getting his 12th stent in eight years.
Dubbing Ganguly a “man with a heart of steel”, Dr B K Goyal, director of cardiology at Bombay Hospital, who performed all the procedures said, “It is unusual for a person to undergo so many heart surgeries. Luckily for Ganguly, none of the stents have developed restenosis (repeated narrowing). He is back on his feet within a couple of days of an angioplasty and despite his age, puts in 10 hours at work every day.”
Ten years after his bypass surgery that took place in 1991, Ganguly developed angina. Doctors advised him to undergo an angioplasty and two stents were implanted. However, by 2003, he had to undergo yet another procedure and this time, doctors placed four stents in his heart. Dr Goyal added that this time, Ganguly was reluctant to undergo even an angiography (a procedure to detect the extent of blockage). “However, when the pain got so severe that he couldn’t walk, he got himself admitted and prepared for another angioplasty,” he said.
Ganguly had three grafts done during his bypass, one of which was blocked recently leading to the placing of the 12th stent. Dr Goyal said that since the last procedure, Ganguly’s heart ejection fraction (the heart function rate) had reduced from 40% to 20%.
While it is common to repeat an angioplasty or bypass on patients, Dr Narendra Bansal, head of the cardiology department at JJ Hospital said that 12 stents was an unusual figure. “Normally, when a patient is reluctant to undergo a bypass surgery we perform a multi–vessel angioplasty, with 3–4 stents being placed. It is very rare that 5–6 stents are placed,” he said. Bansal added that normally a cardiologist would recommend a repeat bypass rather than a repeat angioplasty. “However, if the patient was reluctant to undergo such a major surgery we would repeat an angioplasty,” he added. A senior cardiologist, who didn’t want to be named, said that multiple stents were commonplace in the US where the government sponsored healthcare. “In India, the high costs of the stents make it impossible for patients to afford so many of them,” he added.