Dr. Sanket Kumar Mehta, an anaesthesiologist from Surat, has fought valiantly against the Coronavirus and the various complications caused by it. He has been finally discharged in good health from MGM Healthcare, a super-specialty quaternary care hospital in Chennai.
The doctor, who made national headlines when he risked his life in a selfless act by removing his oxygen support to provide another patient with ventilator support, tested positive on August 6, 2020, at a Surat hospital. He was put on supportive care and as his oxygen requirements increased, he was shifted to the COVID ICU and put on life support. The doctor who shared the ward with another patient discovered that the patient was suffering from severe COVID infection and was in respiratory failure. At this point, he heroically took himself off life support to put the other patient on ventilator life support.
Following this incident, Dr. Mehta’s condition worsened. He has given antiviral medicines such as Tocilizumab, Remdesivir, and Convalescent plasma and was then shifted to a non-COVID ICU as he showed signs of improvement. However, increasing respiratory distress warranted intubation and he was back in the ICU where he was given antibiotics and antifungals in view of sepsis. With no improvement in the health of the patient, ECMO (Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation) was initiated. Complications developed in the collapse of his lungs, low tidal volume despite repeated bronchoscopies, and recruitment maneuvers.
Commenting on the patient’s condition, Dr. Apar Jindal, Clinical Director & Consultant, Lung Transplant, Interventional Pulmonology & Chest Medicine, said, “Dr. Sanket was brought in with lungs heavily damaged by COVID-19. Since beginning his treatment here, his lungs have shown remarkable improvement and he is now breathing naturally.” A tracheostomy was done on the patient after family counseling, following which he was slowly weaned onto a CPAP machine. This helped improve his oxygenation and he was taken off ECMO.
Post-surgery the patient’s blood cultures continued to remain positive and antibiotics were continued. He was then weaned onto wearing a T piece/Tracheo life as his subglottic secretions continued to remain significant and his cuff was inflated. However, the secretions reduced and his cuff deflated as treatment continued. A final CT Chest scan showed his lungs to have recovered and the tracheostomy tube was then removed. Dr. Mehta is currently stable and on his way to full fitness, health and vigour.