- A gathering of 100 liver transplant recipients from across India
- Six patients will share their journey of liver transplant and motivate others not to lose hope if they have end stage liver disease
- Indian film actor Ms. Chitrangada Singh graces the occasion as the Chief Guest
@ Vikas Sharma | Sr Journalist
New Delhi– On the occasion of Doctor’s Day, Max Healthcare, one of the leading healthcare providers in the country organised a day-long event today at Max Hospital, Saket to celebrate the ‘true spirit of living a full life’. Ten on ten – life after liver transplant programme was attended by 100+ patients and their attendants who underwent liver transplant over a decade ago and have been leading a healthy life ever since. Select patients narrated their story of triumph over fatal life incidents as an inspiration to many others. The event was organised by the Liver and Biliary Sciences team of Max healthcare led by Dr. Subhash Gupta, renowned liver transplant surgeon who pioneered liver transplant in India / South Asia over 20 years ago. The event was graced by Bollywood actor, Ms. Chitrangada Singh who was surprised to see the quality of life after liver transplant and praised the excellent clinical work being done by Max Institution and congratulated the medical team. Also present at the occasion was,Ms. Pallavi Kumar, Executive Director, MOHAN Foundation who spoke about the importance of organ donation and encouraged people to come forward for this noble cause.
Liver holds a crucial function in human anatomy and over the years, liver disease burden has gone up in India. Changing lifestyle, obesity, increasing prevalence of diabetes, alcoholism are important contributors to this liver epidemic. Luckily there is an effective hepatitis B vaccine and a cure for Hepatitis C.
Liver failure is from severe deterioration of liver function when a large portion of the liver is damaged. Most of such cases are manageable if detected early and the patient consciously decides to follow the disciplined path but when you hit the end of the road and liver transplant is the only option left, then an experienced liver team will help you recover quickly. A decade ago, ‘liver transplant’ was looked upon as an impossible and fearful form of surgery – but with technological advancements, skill upgradation, rising clinical expertise, improved infrastructure, global exposure and knowledge exchange and more and more live donors coming forth to save lives.
The gathering of 100+ patients is a testimony to the fact that a combination of advancement in medical science and an individual’s willpower can help patients lead a fulfilling life even after a complicated and risky procedure such as liver transplant. Therefore, there is more and more timely need for liver transplant operations in order to save patients of cirrhosis.
Talking about this event, Dr. Subhash Gupta, Chairman – Liver and Biliary Sciences, Max Super Speciality Hospital, Saket said, “It is overwhelming to see so many old patients living a complete and healthy life after liver transplant. I would take this opportunity to request and urge people to pledge their organs after death so that more and more transplants can be done . I also salute the spirit of these patients and more importantly, their families and friends who loved them enough to donate a part of themselves to save their lives.”
Speaking at the event, Chitrangada Singh, Bollywood Actress, said, “This meeting has been a pleasant surprise for me as I had thought that liver cirrhosis meant sure death. I am amazed to see how life returns to normal after transplantation. But perhaps it is more important to prevent liver disease by avoiding excessive alcohol, taking a balanced diet and by regular exercise.
Patients and their thoughts
Dr. Anil Nand Lal Suchak, a Prominent Doctor from Mumbai, says, “Thanks to the CLBS team I have lived a normal and fully active life post my liver transplant in 2007. Over the years, I have additionally taken various precautions as I am on immunosuppressants for life which means I need to stay away from infective patients; however, I still go for all the CPR, intubations and other critical procedures as a lifetime promise I’ve made to my patients. While, I was fortunate to get a liver donor for my transplant but more than 90% of people diagnosed with end stage liver disease have no recourse but death. Therefore, we all should come forward to do our part and give them a second chance at life. One message that I would like to convey is that end stage liver disease seems like the end of the road, but it is really not, and I am a living example of this.”
Mr. Ashok Pant Kumar, Former Education Officer says, “I went to see a doctor with the complaint of poor digestion, severe jaundice (twice), recurring ailments, itchy body, frequent cramps, dark skin and fatigue. Little did I know that all of these were preliminary symptoms of hepatitis C. Subsequently, I underwent a liver transplant in January 2008 under the care of CLBS team. Almost, 85%-90% of my liver was completely damaged at the time of the transplant. The liver was donated by my younger son Shivasheesh ( 18+) and I am forever grateful to him. Last 11 years of my life have been beautiful and illness-free. I am very fortunate enough to call myself completely healthy, which only a few people can say out loud.”
Mr. Anil Lamsal, a Successful Film Maker and Travel Agent says, “I was told I had only 10 days to live by a doctor I previously consulted in Nepal, I was informed that I had a failed liver which was a result of Wilson disease. However, the CLBS team restored my hope and gave me assurance of living a full life. And, he kept his word. Post recovery, I was ecstatic as I felt healthier. In the past few years, my lifestyle has dramatically changed – I am more conscious about my health and hygiene.”
Dasrath Pal, father of Chandni Pal says, “I was aghast when my first child died from Wilson’s disease and when Chandni was diagnosed with the same illness, I left no stone unturned to find a cure for my daughter. 15 years ago, while, liver transplant was in its infancy in India, I chose to donate a part of my liver to my beloved daughter no matter how difficult or complex the surgery was.”
With medical science becoming so advanced, a miracle which could only be gifted to us by God himself is now imaginable – thanks to doctors. Therefore, we appreciate and salute the spirit and the attitude of these survivors and wish them the luck for their life ahead.