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Sahyadri Hospitals successfully performs cataract surgery on 2 months old with congenital heart defect

Sahyadri Hospitals helps restore vision and brings new light to the child’s life despite the risks of administering anaesthesia

a team of doctors at Sahyadri Hospitals performed a high risk cataract removal surgery successfully on a two month old baby, Manavi Solanki, suffering from congenital heart defect.

Manavi was less than a month when her parents brought baby Manavi for a check up to Pediatric Opthalmologist, Dr. Nikhil Rishikeshi at Sahyadri Hospital Deccan Gymkhana. According to her mother, baby Manavi had never seen since birth and white spots were visible in both eyes since birth and both eyes were small in size.  Upon further examination by doctors, it was found that Manavi was suffering from Congenital Rubella Syndrome. Sahyadri-Hospitals-cataract-surgeryCongenital Rubella syndrome can occur at any stage of Pregnancy, but is severe if contracted in the 1st trimester of pregnancy. Along with cataract, the Rubella virus also causes other complications such as severe heart defects and deafness.

Additional tests were conducted to ascertain whether any other organs in Manavi’s body were affected by the virus. The test results showed that she also had congenital heart disease. This increased the chances of complications in the surgery.

Dr. Rishikeshi pointed out “Patients with Congenital Rubella Syndrome (CRS) usually require surgical intervention for congenital cataract. Since CRS affects vital organs such as eyes and heart, it is important to perform the surgery in the first few months after birth. ”

Manavi was kept under observation for 1 day to ensure there were no further complications. Once the doctors had ascertained her condition, they decided to operate on Manavi.
Dr. Vikas Karne, Consultant Anaesthetist & Pain Management, Sahyadri Speciality Hospital, Deccan Gymkhana said “In addition to severe cardiac defects, Manavi’s tender age also increased the risk factors of administering anaesthesia greatly such as the possibility of a cardiac arrest. The combination of low weight, cardiac complications and tender age, made Manavi’s surgery a challenging one.”

Given the complicated nature of the surgery, Sahyadri Hospital Deccan Gymkhana was the first choice for the doctors considering their quaternary care facilities including super speciality backup, competent anaesthetists and expert ophthalmologists.

Sahyadri Hospitals medical team was led by Dr. Nikhil Rishikeshi (Paediatric Opthalmologist), Dr. Vikas Karne (Anaesthetist), Dr. Meenal Patil (Anaesthetist), Manisha Awate (nurse) and Dilip Patil (technician). The challenge the team faced was regulating the anesthesia and conducting the surgery on both eyes in a single surgery.

However, the surgery was successfully completed within 1 hour.

Manavi’s mother, Bhagyashree Solanki elated at the success of the surgery said, “We have truly been blessed to have a team of doctors as efficient as the one at Sahyadri Hospitals performing the surgery on our child. This day, when our daughter can now see this beautiful world, was only possible because of them.”
Awareness on the Rubella virus vaccination is not as wide spread as it should be. Manavi’s case is a good example on the importance of women and expectant mothers being vaccinated for Rubella. Almost 100,000 children worldwide are born with Congenital Rubella Virus every year. In India, approximately 50,000 children are born blind from Congenital Cataract every year, of which at least 25% are due to maternal Rubella. Only 55% females in the reproductive age group are immune to the rubella virus, which means nearly 45% of women are susceptible to Rubella.


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