KOCHI: In a milestone achievement, 11-month-old girl Hazal Mariam has successfully undergone a liver transplant at Aster Medcity in Kochi.

Hazal is the youngest person who underwent the surgery in the state . The infant had been suffering from a congenital condition, ‘Biliary Atresia’ in which bile flow from the liver to the gallbladder is blocked causing the bile to be trapped inside the liver resulting in damage and scarring of the liver cells (cirrhosis), and if left untreated, liver failure.

A few months after Hazel was born, her mother Shini Koshy of Fort Kochi noticed a yellowish tinge in her skin, which increased over the weeks.

The baby showed decrease in appetite and irritability. As her urine also turned dark, the worried parents consulted a local pediatrician.

“On evaluation, it was found that the infant’s developmental milestones were delayed because of her condition.

“The parents were also scared because of episodes of vomiting of blood due to the complications arising from liver failure. Due to delay in detection of the condition, the damage to the infant’s liver was extensive and the infant had developed life threatening liver failure. It was clear to us that only a liver transplant could save the infant’s life,” Dr Mathew Jacob, consultant, Aster Integrated Liver Care said:

The first priority of the specialists was to get the infant fit for the liver transplantation. She was extremely malnourished and weak which could increase the risk of complications and survival after the transplant. The multi-specialty team that also consisted of pediatricians and dieticians charted out a detailed plan to nutritionally rehabilitate the infant prior to the transplant.

“Since the infant was not feeding well, a feeding tube was placed via her nose to ensure adequate protein and calorie intake. We knew that we were racing against time as the liver disease was progressing rapidly,” Dr Rajappan Piillai, consultant, Neonatology said.

The liver transplant operation was carried out successfully by a team of specialized transplant surgeons from Aster Integrated Liver Care.

Hazel Mariam is now back at home and recuperating. Hazel is the first child of Shini Koshy and Jibin Koshy Vaidyan who is working in Abu Dhabi.

The specialist medial team included Dr Mathew Jacob, consultant, Integrated Liver Care, Dr Naveen Ganjoo, consultant, Integrated Liver Care, Dr Rehan Saif, consultant, Integrated Liver Care, Dr Charles Panckel, consultant, Integrated Liver Care, Dr  Rajappan Pillai P, consultant, Pediatric Intensive Care, Dr Suresh G Nair, senior consultant, Anaesthesiologist and Dr Sangeeth P S is senior specialist Anesthesiologist.