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Times of India
08 July 2010
By Prafulla Marpakwar
Mumbai, India

Nashik doctors keep woman awake during bypass surgery
A week ago, a team of Nashik–based doctors led by cardiologist Anirudha Dharmadhikari successfully performed “awake bypass surgery” on a fifty four–year–old housewife. “Certainly, it’s a rare surgery. We performed it a few days ago and postsurgery, the woman is fine,” Dharmadhikari told TOI on Wednesday.

A month ago, the woman had visited Dharmadhikari’s Saibaba heart care centre, complaining of severe discomfort. Following a coronary angiography, it was confirmed that there were multiple blockages in certain arteries. “We had the option of bypass surgery. But as she had severe lung disease, we planned awake bypass surgery. A huge risk was involved in the procedure,” Dharmadhikari said.

Such procedures have been performed in Mumbai and Bangalore. “It’s not a routine bypass surgery. In Nashik, we did a novel job with our team of doctors,” he said.

In the present case, Dharmadhikari of J J hospital, said as the woman had a severe lung ailment, using the ventilator was highly risky. It would have been required for a prolonged time. In that event, the possibility of an adverse impact on quality of life of the patient was very high. “In the bypass surgery, we administer general anaesthesia. But in awake bypass surgery, we administer spinal anaesthesia. As a result, during the entire procedure of well over three hours, the patient was awake,” he said.

Dharmadhikari said, while awake surgery requires a high level of skill, the job of the anaesthetic requires a similar level of skill. Over 204 heart surgeries have been performed at the Saibaba heart centre. Excardiology professor A Kumar said performing awake bypass surgery requires a different skill–set. “Administration of spinal anaesthesia is a difficult task. Nashik doctors have performed a miracle in the field of cardiac procedure,” Kumar said

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