NEW DELHI: Hospitals are taking extra care of the elderly and children who have a history of respiratory illness and have to undergo planned surgery. Doctors said this is because an acute attack of respiratory condition, like asthma or chronic bronchitis, can have fatal consequences.
On Wednesday, TOI had reported how a 75-year-old man developed breathing trouble while recuperating from a hip replacement surgery at a top private hospital. Mucous collection in his airways led to sepsis and his death.
The doctor who treated him said, “He was a pre-existing patient of chronic bronchitis. The surgery went fine, but due to bad air his respiratory condition worsened and he had to be put on ventilator. He then caught infection and passed away.”
Dr S P Singh, principal consultant and coordinator, anaesthesia department at BLK Super Speciality Hospital, said, “Many patients are calling to postpone surgery due to nagging cough or chest congestion.”
“Pollution leads to collection of mucous in the airways. If it isn’t cleared in time, there is a risk of infection and even death,” said Dr Arup Basu, pulmonologist at Sir Ganga Ram Hospital (SGRH).
Dr Sanjeev Bagai, vice-chairman and director of Manipal Hospital, Dwarka, said post-operative care of elderly patients is very important in this weather. “Persistent cough can put pressure on stitches and lead to infection,” he added.