Five months after a spinal surgery in Nanded, labourer Kondiba Gaikwad was admitted to a Mumbai government hospital, when doctors found that a screw fitted to his spine had got dislodged and strayed into his chest.
In a complicated operation being planned in Gokuldas Tejpal (GT) Hospital, doctors will now attempt to remove the screw from the 41-year-old labourer’s chest and re-conduct the entire spine surgery. Gaikwad, who earns Rs 250-300 daily, suffered cervical myelopathy — a condition in which the spinal cord gets compressed — while doing heavy lifting at a construction site. According to his relative Namdev Gundale, he underwent a cervical spine surgery on April 21 in Aadhar hospital, Nanded.
Medical records show four screws and one plate was fitted to his cervical spine below neck. A decompression surgery was conducted in his spinal cord.
“After surgery when he returned home, his health worsened. He suffered pain while walking, sitting or sleeping,” Gundale said. The labourer lives with his wife, four daughters and a son in Nanded. The sole breadwinner could not resume work since the movement of spine got restricted.
“We went back to the hospital where an x-ray was done. Doctors said another operation was needed. We had no money, so we decided to come to Mumbai,” relative Bhujang Gundale said.
Dr Rajeshwar Pawar, orthopaedic surgeon in Aadhar hospital, told The Indian Express that the surgery was successful. “The patient developed an infection post surgery, which led to loosening of the plate and screws. It can happen in 1-2 per cent of surgeries. We were willing to re-operate but the family could not afford.”
On September 7, Gaikwad reached Mumbai and underwent multiple MRI and CT scan tests in Gokuldas Tejpal hospital.
The scans showed that a screw was lodged in his chest, close to the outer layer of the lungs and was at the risk of entering the lungs’ inner cavity. Doctors currently treating him said the compression surgery would have to be conducted again. “From below the neck, the screw must have travelled 7 to 8 cm,” said orthopaedic surgeon Dr Dhiraj Sonawane, GT hospital.
The three other screws and plate fitted to his cervical spine were also found lose, indicating that the decompression surgery in Nanded had also failed.
The government hospital has quoted a budget of Rs 80,000 for the revision surgery. The family has started approaching various trusts to gather funds. “We have managed to get Rs 40,000,” relative Gundale said.