MUMBAI: A Pakistani national was given a new lease on life by Indian doctors who performed a risky heart surgery on him at Bandra's Asian Heart Institute in Mumbai, said a report published on The Times of India.
57-year-old Zafar Ahmed Lali, who weighed over 125 kilograms, had five blood vessel blockages and a defective aortic valve — escalating surgical risk to thrice as much as other patients.
The heart surgery and aortic valve replacement were performed on April 18 using arteries from within the patient's chest instead of his leg, as is the norm with such procedures.
Vice-Chairman Asian Heart Institute Dr. Ramakanta Panda said, "Even though at AHI, we have done up to 12 grafts in a patient, the blockages in this patient's case were extremely critical. We had to use only arteries from inside his chest to perform all bypasses. In addition the aortic valve was also replaced, making this a high risk surgery."
He added he was glad that the patient had chosen to come to India for the procedure.
Lali's health problems were exacerbated due to his sedentary lifestyle and chain-smoking habit.
In November 2014, after undergoing an Electrocardiogram (ECG), Lali was advised an angiography, which detected five blockages.
Zafar began to reduce his weight, managing to lose 20kgs by March 2015.
Although he was advised by a physician to approach the Cleveland Clinic in the United States, cost constraints forced him to search for other options.
He was operated within five days after arriving in India on April 13. Dr. Panda says the patient's recovery has been smooth.
Lali — who hails from a political family in Pakistan — said, "I find myself lucky that despite being a Pakistani, I could get through very easily and seek the best care."