A 15-year-old girl with a ‘rare’ cardiac condition underwent an eight-hour surgery at a city hospital last month and is now recovering, said doctors.
A leaked pipe that provides blood from the heart to the body and the root of the pipe were replaced with a synthetic graft.
The patient was suffering from what doctors call aortic dissection, a condition marked by a split in the aorta, the large artery that carries blood from the heart to the body.
“The girl had been suffering from shortness of breath and palpitation. She was tall and thin with unusually longer limbs and hyper-flexible joints and had short-sightedness,” said Debashree Gangopadhyay, paediatric cardiologist at the RN Tagore International Institute of Cardiac Sciences, who conducted tests on the girl before referring her to a cardiac surgeon at the hospital.
The clinical symptoms suggested the girl was suffering from Marfan syndrome — a genetic disorder affecting connective tissues that support and anchor the organs.
“Aortic dissection is a manifestation of Marfan syndrome,” said Atanu Saha, senior consultant cardiac surgeon at the hospital who led a team that operated on the girl.
The girl from Purba Medinipur went under the knife on September 15. “It was an eight-hour surgery. We replaced her aorta and the aortic valve with a composite valved conduit,” said Saha.
The girl was discharged a week later. “If left untreated, aortic dissection can be life-threatening,” said Saha.
Gangopadhyay said tall and thin teenagers who get tired too easily and have short-sightedness and unusually longer limbs should promptly consult a cardiologist.