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Narayana Health
Source Name: Narayana Health

Mobile ECMO Retrieval Team of Narayana Health City Saves a Life

Mar 28, 2019   16:42 IST 
Bangalore, Karnataka, India

Compassion has no boundaries and that’s what happened with Mr. Nagesh. He was given a new lease of life at a city hospital by the ECMO (Extra Corporeal Life Support) retrieval team of Narayana Health City.


34 year old Mr. Nagesh was admitted at St. John’s hospital owing to fever and breathing difficulty. Since he was severely ill, he was admitted in Intensive Care Unit (ICU) and was put on anti-flu medicines and artificial respiration (mechanical ventilation). Since his oxygen parameters were not improving, he was further analyzed and it was identified that he was suffering from severe acute respiratory syndrome (ARDS). Acute respiratory syndrome (ARDS) is a life-threatening lung condition wherein the flow of oxygen into the lungs and blood is prevented. As a part of therapy the patient was administered artificial respiration in prone position (face down position) for a period of sixteen hours, however, then also his oxygen parameters did not show any improvement. As a rescue and life saving measure doctors at St. John’s Hospital advised initiating Extra Corporeal Life Support (ECMO) and reached out to Narayana Health City.


As the patient was critical and not in a position to be shifted from one room to the other within the hospital, the ECMO team of Narayana Health City bought the ECMO unit to the St. John’s Hospital. They initiated the ECMO at the St. John’s Hospital and then took the patient on ECMO to Narayana Health City for further treatment. The patient was put on VV ECMO (Venous Venous Extra Corporeal Life Support).


ECMO is a medical device used to provide support to patients whose heart and lungs are unable to provide adequate amount of gas exchange to sustain life. This intervention is mostly used to treat adults with cardiac and respiratory failure. ECMO works by artificially removing the carbon dioxide and oxygenating red blood cells. It is a life-sustaining intervention used in the later treatment of a patient with heart or lung failure. In case of VV ECMO, a single cannula is placed in the vein and with the help of rotatory pump the blood is artificially drawn to the machine. The drawn blood is then passed through an oxygenation chamber where carbon dioxide is removed and blood is oxygenated.


Speaking about the case, Dr. Harish M M, Consultant and In charge Multi-disciplinary Intensive Care Unit, Narayana Health City, said, “ECMO requires cannulation and performing cannulation at an unfamiliar surrounding is demanding. In this case, as the patient was extremely critical and even transportation was also a challenge.  A smallest alteration or disturbance in his position during transportation would have extremely impacted his condition. However, owing to the co-operation from the referral hospital and utmost care by our expert team we were able to successfully retrieve and treat the patient.”


The retrieval was performed by Dr. Harish M M and his 12 member team consisting of cardiothoracic surgeons, intensivists, emergency medicine physicians, perfusionists and nursing staff. He also expressed that it is the overall fruitful outcome of the efforts taken by his colleagues (Dr. Sanjay, Dr. Riyan, Dr. Anup, Dr. Arjun, Dr. Vimal and Dr. Hemanth), resident doctors and other allied health science staff in his department, who supported the patient round the clock after he has been shifted to MICU of Narayana Health City.


Sharing his joy of recovering, Mr. Nagesh said, “My family was frightened when they got know about my deteriorating condition and I urgently need to be moved to another hospital with ECMO facility. They were on the verge of losing their hope as even a slight mistake could be have been life threatening. However, the team of doctors at St. John’s Hospital as well as Narayana Health City were very understanding. They explained to my family in detail my condition, the treatment and moreover put them at ease.”


I am thankful to the entire team of Narayana Health City for coming to rescue my life,” added Mr. Nagesh.


This intervention is not just an example of the medical expertise of Narayana Health, it is a testimony of it’s vision to make quality healthcare accessible to everyone across the length and breadth of the country.


About Narayana Health City, Bengaluru

NH Health City is located in Bommasandra, Bengaluru, which comprises of Narayana Institute of Cardiac Sciences (NICS), a super specialty hospital for cardiology and cardiac surgery, and Mazumdar Shaw Medical Center (MSMC), a multispecialty hospital for cancer care, neurology, neurosurgery, nephrology, urology, and  advanced multidisciplinary intensive care unit (MICU), is one of India's largest bone marrow transplant units. NH Health City operates a stem cell bank.

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