From a Cup of acid to a cup of tea- an eventful journey

It was a minor domestic dispute. Swayed by uncontrolled emotions, she gulped the acid. She was immediately taken to the local hospital in Mianwali district, where her stomach was washed. The family returned. Yet, this was not the end but the beginning of an agonizing journey 08 months ago. Eating or drinking anything became increasingly painful and impossible for her in a few days, because the acid had damaged her food tube and stomach. They visited the leading hospitals in Rawalpindi and Islamabad, where she was treated by multiple ENT Specialist, Gastroenterologists and cardiothoracic surgeons but there was no satisfactory relief of her feeding problem.

The condition became worse and she was unable to eat anything from mouth rather she had to spit her saliva in a bottle all the time. The doctors passed a feeding tube in her intestine for survival. The situation continued for eight months, despite unending visits to the hospitals and clinics. The patient finally visited Kulsum International Hospital, Islamabad. She was referred to the chest surgeon after initial examination by the Gastroenterologist.

The chest surgeon, Brigadier (Rtd) Dr. Asif Asghar is among the few senior chest surgeons in Pakistan. The radiology reports and analysis confirmed that food tube of the patient was badly damaged and the system had to be reconstructed or replaced. Else, the patient was to depend on food intake through feeding tube, whole life. The damaged and blocked food pipe led to aspiration of saliva in lungs causing infection with fever cough off. The situation was progressively getting dangerous as she now had a gross weight of 42 Kgs with repeated episodes of minor pneumonias.

A plan for her treatment was finalized. She was advised 02 weeks aggressive nutritional support for a weight gain of 5 Kgs. The damaged food pipe and stomach will be removed and replaced by a large intestine tube graft brought in neck to be united to throat. The family was counseled about the whole treatment process. The six-hour long surgery was well tolerated by patient. The patient recovered completely in 13 days. She was offered a sip of water which she swallowed well first time after eight months. REFLEXLY THE FIRST SENTENCE SHE UTTERED AFTER SAYING AL HAMDOLILLAH WAS A WISH TO DRINK A CUP OF TEA. The excited family, treating surgical team and hospital staff cherished the moment. She had started eating after eight long months to the satisfaction of all as for the time of suffering had ended. She has joined back her family and is busy in her daily chores of household.