Dr Mukesh Popat, a senior dermatologist from Rajkot, was seen by Dr Anand Khakhar at a Comprehensive Liver Clinic, held by the Centre for Liver Disease & Transplantation (CLDT) in 2018. Several years prior, his real sister had undergone liver transplantation with the same team. She suffered from ‘Auto-immune Hepatitis’, a disease that often runs in families.
Knowing the familial nature of disease, Dr Popat’s visited Dr Khakhar even though his over-all performance status was enough to allow him to run his clinical practice with minor limitations. As advised by Dr Khakhar, he underwent medical evaluation and optimization therapy to prepare for imminent liver transplantation. In-order to improve his chances for an early transplant, he was listed at several centres operated by Dr Khakhar & his colleagues at CLDT namely Bangalore, Chennai and Hyderabad.
Over time, his deteriorating liver cirrhosis, lead to water accumulation, weakness, swollen legs, weight loss and gradually, he was unable to work anymore. We decided to wait no further and initiated live liver donor evaluation for his wife and son. The son was not fit and the wife was finally prepared to be the donor. All this time, he was being followed up by the multi-disciplinary team at the ‘Liver Clinics’ to ensure that he stays healthy while on the waiting list.
As luck would have it, suddenly one fine day, in last week of February 2020 a patient admitted at CIMS hospital following Massive Brain Hemorrhage deteriorated and eventually progressed to brain-death. The critical care and anesthesia team at CIMS promptly swung into action and took up medical stabilization, the social workers and clinical psychologists grief-counselled the family finally they consented.
Multi-visceral organ retrieval followed by cadaver liver transplantation followed and after a surgical procedure of about 6.0 hours, Dr Popat breathed safely. The transplantation was successful. The wave of joy and relief spread across the milieu.
The nurses at the transplant unit were over-heard saying “the doctor is a good patient”, (pun intended). He did very well following the surgery and went from strength to strength. He was ready for discharge on post operative day 7 itself. However on day 10 following liver transplantation, Dr Popat finally was released into the bright and happy world with a ‘new liver’, he called it ‘his new life’.