Little ones who braved a weak heart

The invincible

Emotions ran high as parents of children with congenital heart ailments poured their hearts out at an event organised by Manipal Hospital on Saturday.

“See my son today, he stands before you like any other child and that is what keeps me happy,” said Priyanka, a mother of a child with ventricular septal defect (VSD), as tears rolled down her eyes. She recalled the rough patch she went through before her son was given treatment and thanked the doctor who treated the child.

Priyanka had discovered through prenatal screening that the child would have minute holes in the heart but timely intervention played a key role in the child’s recovery.

1.50 children lakh affected.

Dr N S Devanand, HoD, Cardiothoracic surgery, Manipal Hospital, said, “In India, there are at least 1.50 lakh children who need heart operations. Out of the ones treated, just about two per cent might see a relapse in the condition.”

Pointing out that there are about 150 different types of pediatric cardiac ailments, he said that careful observation of a child would help detect problems.

Typical symptoms

“There are typical symptoms such as abnormal breathing, difficulty in breast-feeding, blueish colouration of the skin, repeated infection and no weight gain. Be it parents or doctors, these are evident symptoms which will prompt a need for medical intervention,” he said, adding that a special foetal echocardiography would help detect problems at a prenatal stage.

The event saw the participation of patients with congenital heart ailments and their parents. Besides fun-filled activities that were organised for children, such as pot making and singing rhymes, there were activities arranged for parents too.

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