Mumbai: Two years after he lost his voice, teen speaks again

Updated: May 25, 2019, 07:52 IST | Rupsa Chakraborty

Doctors at Sir HN Reliance Foundation performed a complicated procedure that helped get his voice back

Mumbai: Two years after he lost his voice, teen speaks again
Shubham Shelke with (to his left) Dr Bachi Hathiram and Dr Vicky Khattar who operated on him

It was an emotional moment for his parents when 18-year-old Shubham began to speak last month, two years after he lost his voice from complications following an accident. Doctors at Sir HN Reliance Foundation Hospital performed a complicated procedure that helped get his voice back.

Shubham Shelke, a Nagpur resident, was on his way to take the HSC examination in 2016, when he met with a road accident that injured his brain. Doctors removed the blood clot that formed in it. They also performed a tracheostomy (a small surgical opening in the neck) so he could breathe. But soon he developed infections that narrowed down his windpipe and affected his speech. He was referred to Sir HN Reliance Foundation Hospital under the care of ENT consultant Dr Bachi Hathiram.

"His airway was crushed, so the air from the lungs couldn't go to the voice box, which is the requisite for voice production. Once we repaired the damaged portion of the airway and joined the good ends, it healed well, and he could speak and breathe like before," said Dr Hathiram. She performed the surgery along with Dr Vicky Khattar in the last week of April.

Talking to mid-day, Shubham's parents said that they had lost hope that their son would be able to speak or study again. After several surgeries and months of treatment, last month, Shubham was discharged and able to speak again. "Our happiness knew no bounds when my son called me papa after months. Many doctors had given up until we reached this hospital," said Bharat Shelke, Shubham's father. The dedicated student that Shubham is, he studied while undergoing treatment, and appeared for the Std XII exam. The Shelkes are waiting for the results.

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