Monday, December 22, 2008

Eye Camp Dec 2008.

21st Dec was very cold and grey.But the camp activities started in right earnest at 8.30 am.
Our young volunteers from youth against cancer,Anindita and Neha Mehta helped in the registration and noting patients vision. These patients were then escorted to the doctors who examined them and gave the required medications.Those who needed further detailed examination were given an appointment over the next 2 weeks or so. There were a number of patients who needed cataract surgery and they will be investigated and given dates for surgery.The surgery will be done at Sehgal Nursing Home ,Meera Bagh. They are kind enough to allow us to utilise teir Operation Theatre at cost price only. The doctors who attended the patients were,
Dr.Prashant Kashyap.
Dr.Devinder Sood.
Dr.Urmila KAshyap.
Dr.Rajeshwary Kulkarni.
Our other volunteers were
Mrs Veena Subedar
Miss Tanvi
Mr Shrikant Subedar
MrChandan Singh.
Ophtho remedies and Sapient were the companies which helped by providing a lot of free medicines for the camp. The rest was purchsed.All patients were given free medicines.
Now over the next 1 month ,I will be completing all the surgeries and OPD of the camp.
I would like to express a special thanks to my father Dr.MS Joshi,who always wholeheartedly supports all my Aadhar work.He took total charge of the camps organization ,from printing and distribution of the pamplets, getting the arrangements done on the day of the camp, and detailing all the volunteers to various for various jobs.
Thanks to him I could concentrate totally on the medical side.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Where is the disability?

Today I saw an interesting sight. While I was driving to my clinic, I saw a small boy aged around 6-7 yrs,riding a full size cycle at full speed on the very busy and crowded main road of Paschim Vihar. The only unusual feature was that this child had only one useful leg with which he was pedalling away .The other leg, affected possibly by polio was flailing by the side of no use at all. I was amazed at the confidence of that child.My first thought was "my god!how is he going to get off".But obviously as he got on I suppose. To my eyes he had a physical disability ,but that kid did not have such a limited view of his abilities. It is really true that there are teachers all around you.It is just a question of how you look at what you see.
This little fellow really showed me disability is a lot of times in the mind.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Eye Camp

Aadhar is organising an eye camp at Shri Sainath Eye And ENT Centre , A-361 Meera Bagh, New Delhi. on 21st Dec. 2008.
All our eye camps are organised in the clinic because all the machinery is at our disposal. All the patients are given a complete eye check-up.Usually we get about 300-350 patients in our camp OPD of the morning.It is not possible to do full justice to all patients in that time. Hence we call 10 patients per day till the work is done. So actually the camp OPD goes on for almost a month.During this period patients requiring surgery are identified and dates are given accordingly. Cataract surgery with intraocular lens implant and glaucoma surgery is done free of cost during the camp.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Ramu's story

I am writing this true story purposely because Ramu and his father really taught me the importance of persistence and patience. We tend to write off so many patients ,thinking it is too late to help them. But this case luckily proved us all wrong.
When Ramu first came to us, he had a huge growth involving the eye.The eye had been completely destroyed and the tumour was hanging out of the orbit. Surface areas were sloughing and bleeding.
He was being treated in LNJP Hospital and was sent for support as he could not afford treatment. I had little hope that we would get a satisfactory result. The tumour was diagnosed as Rhabdomyosarcoma. The delay in treatment was not entirely their fault. They had gone to the district hospital when the tumour was very small. Ramu was admitted but they took their time doing investigations and getting the reports. In the meantime there was a strike by the class IV employees and they were discharged without treatment. Then Ramu and his father went to Allahabad where again after some tests which took a further month after which he was referred to Delhi.
In all this waiting ,valuable time was lost.By the time Ramu came to Delhi the tumour was huge.
Ramu's father was a farmer from a small village. They had no money and no relatives in Delhi. Since Ramu was admitted, the child was at least getting food and a bed to sleep on.
Surgery was ruled out at that stage and chemo-radiotherapy was advised to reduce the size of the tumour. Chemotherapy had a very marked effect and in three cycles the tumour really reduced in size.It was responding to treatment very well. Then Radiotherapy was commenced and this caused a further reduction. The shape of the eyeball became visible.
Between the chemotherapy cycles Ramu and his father stayed on the pavement outside the hospital.
To sustain the two of them Ram Bahadur,Ramu's father started plying a cycle rickshaw. He used to call me Didiya and his main complaint was that Ramu was naughty and would not study. Ramu was like any other 12 yr.old boy. He was always cheerful and during that entire year and a half I never heard him cry or complain. That pair really taught me a thing or two about resilience. They never thought even for a moment that the outcome may be unfavourable. Or maybe at such times ignorance is bliss.
Then came the surgery and the predictable shunting from one department to another. This time it was between the eye department which had to perform the surgery and neurology which had to assess whether there was any intracranial extension of the tumour. This drama went on for about 2 months. I was afraid that precious time and advantage given by radio and chemotherapy would be lost. Though I don't like to interfere in the treatment at all,this time I approached Dr A. Grover in Ganga Ram Hospital and requested him to see Ramu.He called him to the general OPD and after examination took an opinion from the neurosurgery department and posted him for surgery within two days. Dr.Zia Chaudhary was the associate ophthalmologist who took particular care of Ramu. The entire contents of the orbit were removed alongwith the eyeball which was completely destroyed by the tumour. The surgery was uneventful and went off well. This was followed by six cycles of chemotherapy , starting about a month post op. Ramu's entire treatment in Sir Ganga Ram Hospital was free as Dr.Grover admitted him in the general ward.
After the chemotherapy was over Ramu was fitted with a prosthesis giving a good cosmetic result as you can see from the photograph.
Ramu has now gone back to his village and is doing well.