SEVENTY ONE-year-old Rajendra Mashru, who hails from Junagadh in Gujarat, and now staying in Mumbai, is perhaps the oldest patient in Maharashtra who underwent a heart transplant a month ago. Dealing with a cardiac ailment that was detected more than 20 years ago, Mashru eventually got an Automated Implantable Defibrillator (AICD), a device that enabled him to fix abnormal heart rhythms. But when the device’s battery got exhausted and all seemed to have been lost, top cardiac surgeon Dr Anvay Mulay restored his confidence and told him age was not a limitation for a heart transplant. “When nothing seemed to work, it was Dr Mulay who held my hand and insisted that I had a right to live,” Mashru told The Indian Express.

On August 3 every year, the country observes National Heart Transplant Day. Coincidentally, Maharashtra’s first heart transplant was also recorded on August 3, 2015 when the heart of a 42-year-old brain dead woman from Pune was flown by a team to Mumbai and transplanted in 22-year-old Anwar Khan. Till date, more than 175 heart transplants have been performed in the state with a majority in Mumbai and Pune. As a mark of gratitude to organ donors, a human heart chain was made by heart transplant patients from across Maharashtra in Mumbai to encourage organ donation.

In Mumbai, the Sir H N Reliance Foundation Hospital will be lit in red throughout the week. On Tuesday, heart transplant survivors were felicitated at a function by Dr Mulay and a team of surgeons. Among these include Mumbai-based 60-year-old Anirudh Nansi, who went on to win the state-level swimming championship 2022 in less than a year of his heart transplant surgery and 28-year-old J Crasto who recalled the challenging time they had due to pandemic lockdown to fly from Los Angeles to Mumbai in March 2020. After a heart transplant, he is now living his second life with renewed optimism.

Dr Anvay Mulay, Director, Advanced Cardiac Surgery and Heart Transplant, Sir H N Reliance Foundation Hospital, who announced the completion of more than 150 successful heart transplant surgeries along with the team, said it felt deeply satisfying to celebrate these patients.

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📣 The above article is for information purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the guidance of your doctor or other qualified health professional for any questions you may have regarding your health or a medical condition.

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