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Boy dies of alleged anaesthesia overdose

Bangalore, Mar 20, 2013, DHNS:
 Abhishek

A 16-year-old boy, who was admitted to a City hospital to undergo liposuction (removal of excess fat), died due to an alleged overdose of anaesthesia.

Abhishek, who weighed 85 kg, died on Wednesday evening at Columbia Asia Hospital.

He was brought there from Panacea Hospital, where he was supposed to undergo liposuction.  Abhishek’s parents alleged that on Sunday doctors at Panacea Hospital administered an overdose of anaesthesia to the boy, following which he suffered a cardiac arrest.

“Just after he was prepared for surgery (at Panacea), doctors informed me that Abhishek had suffered a cardiac arrest. The doctors said due to this my son had gone into a comatose condition,” said Ramesh, the boy’s father.

He was shifted to Columbia Asia Hospital at Yeshwantpur on Monday. Arvind Kasargod, chief of medical service at the hospital, said the boy was referred in a comatose state.
 “We did the best to revive Abhishek. We informed the parents that the boy was in a critical condition and chances of his survival were remote,” he said.

Abhishek’s parents and relatives claimed to have overheard the doctors from Columbia Asia and Panacea discussing the large dose of anaesthesia administered to Abhishek. “The doctors at Columbia questioned Govardhan, anaesthesiologist at Panacea, why he had given a young boy such a large dose. Govardhan said he had expected the boy to sustain it,” Ananthmurthy, the boy’s uncle said.

Doctors at Columbia Asia declared Abhishek dead on Wednesday evening. His brain ceased to function due to lack of oxygen supply. Kasargod said it was difficult to ascertain whether anaesthesia triggered the cardiac arrest.

Denying the allegations, Panacea Hospital said Abhishek had suffered cardiac arrest even before he was taken for surgery. He was successfully resuscitated, the hospital claimed. “After administering anaesthesia, the patient was prepared for surgery,” said Kamala, Chief Medical Officer, Panacea Hospital.  

“He was given an injection to reduce bleeding during surgery. It was after this that he suffered a cardiac arrest. But we managed to revive him in a matter of minutes and before he was shifted to the ICU.” She added that on insistence of the parents, the patient was shifted to another hospital. “We referred him to Columbia Asia Hospital at Yeshwantpur and our anaesthesiologist Govardhan travelled with the family,” she said.

She, however, denied that Abhishek was referred to Columbia Asia in a sedated state.

“He was convulsing continuously and hence we had sedated him. There is a very thin line between being sedated and a comatose stage. We are very sure he was not in a comatose state,” she said.

Though the Subramanyanagara police were informed by Columbia Asia, no complaint was lodged by Abhishek’s parents. His body was taken home on Wednesday night.


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