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Six-hour heart surgery on Lalu

Mumbai, Aug. 27: Lalu Prasad today underwent a six-hour cardiac surgery that involved three procedures, including replacement of the aortic valve and repairing a 3mm hole in the heart.

Cardiac surgeon Ramakant Panda, who led the team of 20 doctors that operated on the former Bihar chief minister at the Asian Heart Institute (AHI) in Bandra, said the 66-year-old “tolerated the procedure very well”.

“The surgery lasted for six hours and 15 minutes. It started at 9.45am and was completed around 4pm,” an AHI spokesperson said. The RJD leader had been diagnosed with aortic stenosis, a common vulvular disease.

“There were no surprises,” Panda told reporters after the surgery. “We had already informed the family that there were multiple issues in the heart, and they were prepared for it. Laluji tolerated the procedure very well.”

The aorta is the body’s main artery that supplies oxygenated blood to the circulatory system. The aortic valve controls this flow and needs to be replaced when it gets clogged. This condition is called aortic stenosis.

Another procedure performed today was aortic repair so that the natural tissues can stabilise for the blood flow to have the right amount of force. The toughest part, the spokesperson said, was repairing the 3mm hole.

Panda said Lalu Prasad would be in intensive care for three to four more days and spend another week at the hospital for post-operative care. He can resume part-time political activities within a fortnight and return to full-time politics in a month, Panda added.

Lalu Prasad had flown to Mumbai on Monday shortly before the counting began for the Bihar Assembly bypolls. The RJD-JDU-Congress alliance won six of the 10 seats that voted last week.