Successful cardiac procedure saves a 36-year-old cancer patient from life threatening emergency at Zulekha Hospital Dubai
36 year old Ghazala Hayat was admitted with a massive pulmonary embolism which is a life threatening condition. She had developed a large clot that obstructed both arteries that supply the lungs. The block was interrupting the blood flow to the lungs, impaired breathing, and caused a huge overload to the heart resulting in a shock state.
Responding quickly to her critical condition, the expert team of doctors at Zulekha Hospital Dubai including Consultant Interventional Cardiology Dr. Hussien Hishmat, Dr. Specialist Medical Oncology Bharadwaj Ponnada who is her treating specialist, and Dr. Sameh Seyam Consultant Critical Care Medicine teamed up to save Ghazala’s life and with utmost care decided to carry out an emergency cardiac procedure which involves dissolving a clot with a special ultrasound equipment (EKOS).
Speaking of the cardiac procedure, Dr. Hussien Hishmat says, “Ghazala’s case was a very high-risk one as she is being treated for an advanced, recurrent, aggressive form of cancer that has spread to her lungs, bone and orbit.
Given our multidisciplinary expertise under one roof at Zulekha Hospital, we were able to save her from this life-threatening condition. Such clots develop suddenly. They can originate from veins of the leg or veins of the abdomen then migrate to the heart and finally hit the lungs. This was the first time she experienced this problem. Patients with cancer are more likely to get clots because of several derangements in the blood vessels and blood coagulation factors.”
He explained, “When patients have a clot in the lung vessels, they must be treated promptly with blood thinners or with clot-dissolving infusion for 24 hours.
In her situation, the clot was large and she became hypotensive, with the background of cancer, so we had to go for a faster, more targeted solution that does not pose a bleeding risk. We chose to go directly into the clot through a tiny puncture in the groin, inert a catheter that emits ultrasound (EKOS) waves to fragment the clot and infuse the clot-dissolving infusion in a much smaller dose for only 12 hours.”
Dr. Bharadwaj adds, “Ghazala has been undergoing treatment at Zulekha Hospital for Extra-skeletal Ewing sarcoma which is a type of cancer arising from soft tissues of the body. She has also undergone two surgeries previously and we are glad she has been very strong and endured these successfully. She is also receiving chemotherapy in view of stage IV disease and has good symptomatic relief after 4 cycles of chemotherapy.”
The procedure was done under local anesthesia and took less than one hour. After this, the infusion continued in the ICU for 12 hours under the supervision of Consultant Critical Care Medicine Dr. Sameh Seyam. He said, “While we prepare and stabilize the patient pre-procedure, our critical role in ICU was to closely watch over the patient after the procedure as well, treat and follow the necessary investigations. Fortunately, everything was taken care of seamlessly.”
Ghazala responded marvelously to the treatment, her blood pressure and oxygen levels improved. She was out of the ICU after 48 hours and went home, fully functional, in 72 hours. Ghazala has been advised to take an oral blood thinner for at least six months to prevent recurrence of clots in addition to adequate hydration with some physical activity that can be mild to moderate as much as she can sustain.
Her family has been extremely thankful to the team of doctors for saving Ghazala’s life and said it was so important for them to be treated at Zulekha Hospital itself understanding her past history was known to her treating doctors.
Dr. Hussien stressed on the importance of the availability of the right expertise, infrastructure and equipment for such critical lifesaving treatments and that choosing a healthcare facility that has all allied specialties right from the start of your diagnosis is vital.
About Zulekha Healthcare Group: www.zulekhahospitals.com
Zulekha Healthcare Group is a Superbrand among the forerunners in UAE healthcare. Today the Group includes two multidisciplinary hospitals in Dubai and Sharjah, as well as UAE medical centers and pharmacies providing specialized services and treatments in over 30 disciplines. The Group has a multidisciplinary Hospital in India – Alexis.
Zulekha Hospital has received extensive recognition for its commitment towards quality care and sustainable business practices, and received the prestigious Dubai Quality Award as well, underling a commitment to providing high quality healthcare to patients and society.