18-Year-old from Chennai becomes India's youngest to undergo rare surgery

A team of cardiac experts at Kauvery Hospital’s Sudden Cardiac Death Prevention Programme (SCDPP), Chennai led by Dr A B Gopalamurugan, Senior Consultant Interventional Cardiologist and Chief of Electrophysiology and SCDPP, successfully implanted a Subcutaneous Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator (S-ICD) in an 18-year-old boy from Chennai. The teenager has become the youngest patient in India to be fitted with the device, thereby preventing sudden cardiac death in this young boy who was found to be at high risk at SCDPP at Kauvery.

Doctors at Kauvery Hospital claimed to have saving the life of the 18-year-old boy who had an episode of loss of consciousness leading to significant head injury. He was assessed in other leading hospitals before being correctly diagnosed at Kauvery Hospital for assessment.  Through a protocoled approach, he was assessed at the SCDPP at Kauvery Hospital where he was discovered to have a life-threatening heart electrical condition called arrhythmia which needed immediate intervention. It was indeed the lethal arrhythmia that caused the loss of
consciousness ion that young boy. His health condition could cause electrical problems in the heart which might lead to sudden cardiac death, and the best way to prevent this is with an ICD which will help regulate his heart.

"Conventionally, these defibrillators which are well known to prevent death from heart electrical problems have been fitted only inside the body, which is inside the vascular system, through an operation. But this comes with its own problems, because the device is within the blood vessel and heart during the entire life span of the patient and places the patient at high risk of infection, reoperation, device extraction risks and radiation" explained Dr. A B Gopalamurugan who led the surgery.  "In the case of the 18-year-old boy, rather than the normal ICD, which utilizes wire leads inserted directly into the heart through a large vein, we used the S-ICD system which was implanted not inside his chest, but outside the chest wall cavity just under the skin.

Which means that the young boy is not going to be put through the risk of infection and recurrent invasive surgeries or heart injury, but still gets the benefit of the defibrillator that saves his life." The 18-year-old boy and his family are glad that what was deemed a life- threatening condition has now been treated and more importantly able to have a normal
quality of life with the best treatment currently available anywhere in the world.