Mumbai: Baby Eliza gets a bed at Cooper hospital; procedure planned for tomorrow
The fact that she's four months old and her skull has not developed yet is a plus, says neurosurgeon
Four-month-old Eliza Waghmare was finally accommodated in the paediatric ward at Cooper Hospital, Vile Parle, on Monday. The family had been sent back from there on Saturday over "unavailability of beds", which Sunday mid-day had reported on November 11.
Confirming the development, her father Anand, who has been shuttling from his residence in Air India quarters, Kalina, to Cooper Hospital, said, "We had to go through the formalities once again on Monday. We were in the hospital by 9 am; by the time Eliza got admitted, it was a little past noon.
'No one should face this'
"We are not asking for any preferential treatment, nor do we intend to cause any inconvenience to other paediatric patients by pulling strings. All we are concerned about is that no patient should have to go through red tape and callous hospital staff, especially at civic hospitals."
Anand added, "Last Friday, we were told that if Eliza got admitted early on Monday, her blood samples (B+) would be collected for grouping, and in case it has to be arranged for the procedure. And once the lab reports were in, the Ommaya reservoir (an intraventricular catheter system that can be used for the aspiration of cerebrospinal fluid), a temporary treatment to reduce the accumulation in her brain, could be done on Wednesday itself."
However, even on Monday, there were shocks and more stress in store for Anand and his wife Jayanti, when, initially, the on-duty nurse refused admission to the infant, claiming they have no instructions to admit a child under neuro-surgery care. The nurse insisted that the admission paper needed to have the name of their paediatric head. It took a lot of persuading and speaking to seniors in the hospital to ensure the admission went through.
Dr Shashank Joshi told mid-day, "We have collected the blood samples for a few crucial tests; the anaesthetist's fitness clearance is crucial for the procedure. As of now, we intend to do it on Wednesday." When asked if Eliza might need any blood transfusion, Dr Joshi clarified, "Usually, no transfusion is needed for this procedure; if at all it's required, it can be arranged from the hospital blood bank.
"Usually a newborn's head takes 15 to 18 months to take shape. In this case, it's a plus that she is only four months old. The skull plates are not connected, and the brain is submerged in the cerebrospinal fluid. It's called hydrocephalus. Once the Ommaya procedure is completed, we have to continue tapping the fluid for the next few months... After that, we will conduct a surgical procedure to insert the shunt, which will be released to the peritoneal (abdomen) cavity. Only then will we be able to analyse and monitor the brain growth."
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