FARIDABAD / August 2023: A 12-year-old boy from Gwalior, who got crushed under a truck, was given a new lease of life at Amrita Hospital, Faridabad, after he underwent 18 surgeries in 3 months. The patient, Harman Singh, is the child of Jaswinder Singh and Charanjit Kaur, who live in Gwalior. While going to the local bazaar near his home with his father, the boy was accidentally run over by a reversing truck, crushing the lower half of his body.
Said the boy’s father Jaswinder Singh, who is a truck driver himself by profession: “I went numb with shock when I saw the truck running over my son. I ran and lifted him up in my arms. His injuries were unbelievable. His abdomen on the right side was ripped open and I could see broken bones and muscles. I called for an ambulance, which took 20 minutes to arrive. But considering the critical condition of Harman, hospitals in Gwalior suggested taking the boy to an advanced tertiary care center. The doctor recommended rushing the child to Amrita Hospital to save his life, and we lost no time in hitting the expressway to Faridabad.”
Said Dr. Anil Murarka, Senior Consultant, Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Amrita Hospital, Faridabad: “We were appalled to see the condition of the child as the ambulance arrived. He was in an extremely critical state. The crush injuries were extremely severe and involved the whole of lower abdomen, right thigh, and back. The young boy’s pelvis was crushed, with multiple fractures. The abdominal and pelvic muscles were severely injured. The urinary bladder was also crushed and separated from the urethra, the tube through which urine leaves the body. His rectum was ruptured, and the right external iliac artery that carries blood to the leg was split open. We were not sure if he could be saved.”
The immediate priority of the doctors in the emergency ward was to stabilize the patient, which was a huge challenge. Immediately after arrival at the hospital, Harman was wheeled into the operating theatre for the very first surgery which lasted 8 hours.
Said Dr. Mohit Sharma, Head, Dept. of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Amrita Hospital, Faridabad: “Over the next three months, 18 different surgeries were conducted on the boy, with many procedures lasting 6-8 hours. In total, the boy spent a total of 50 hours in the operating room. In a remarkable display of medical expertise and teamwork, the pediatric cardiac surgery team successfully repaired major bleeding vessels in a delicate procedure. Complementing their efforts, the reconstruction surgery team undertook multiple meticulous sessions of skin grafting and flap cover applications, facilitating the healing of wounds with precision and care. The doctors also skillfully reconstructed both the urinary bladder neck and the abdominal wall, employing advanced techniques to restore functionality. Gastrointestinal surgeons and gastroenterologists collaborated to repair the rectum. Throughout the challenging journey, the pediatric critical care unit played a pivotal role by ensuring the child’s stability during an extended 85-day period in the ICU”.
Added Dr. Maninder Dhaliwal, Senior Consultant, PICU, Amrita Hospital, Faridabad: “The boy was discharged after 110 days of coming to the hospital. In all, the patient stayed in the pediatric ICU for 85 days. Due to this, infection prevention was critical for us. Though his life has been saved, there is a long way to go. He will need intensive physiotherapy and later reconstruction for adequate movement of his lower limbs and so will need emotional support as he has gone through immense trauma at such a young age.”
Said the boy’s father Jaswinder Singh: “Our life turned upside down with the accident of Harman. For 15 days, he was on a ventilator and couldn’t say a word. It was heartbreaking to see him lying on the bed motionless. His 6-year-old sister had tears in her eyes when he finally opened his eyes and looked at her. Our boy is a born fighter. We are sure he will emerge from this ordeal stronger. We thank the doctors of Amrita Hospital from the bottom of our hearts for making this miracle possible.”
The family of the 12-year-old boy received financial assistance from Mr. Kamaaljeet Singh. As a representative of the Sikh Sangat, he skillfully established connections with numerous Sikh foundations both internationally and within the local Faridabad community. Due to his diligent efforts, the required funds were successfully raised to support the life-saving surgeries of the young boy at Amrita Hospital in Faridabad.