In what can be termed a medical miracle, doctors in Kolkata have successfully removed a cyst similar to the size of a head from an infant, giving him a new lease to life.

Tofajjal (8-month-old) was suffering from a rare condition called Encephalomeningocele since his birth. Apart from disfiguring and an eyesore the disease can be life threatening if not untreated.

“The incidence rate of such cyst is as low as one in 45,000. The surgery was challenging because it involved the brain and the superior sagital sinus. This surgery is a milestone in healthcare in this part of India,” said Dr Sisir Das, senior consultant, Neurosurgery, of the Apollo Gleneagles institute of Neurosciences in Kolkata.

Tofajjal suffering from Encephalomeningocele
Sabiyan Khatun, living 85 km off Agartala in Tripura was elated when she gave birth to a baby eight months ago, but her happiness was short lived. A week after the delivery, the baby’s parents noticed a ‘lump’ on his head which started growing and gradually the cyst became so big it looked like a second head.

“He could not move or crawl because of the heavy weight of his head. The mother had to take care of the second head too. They always had to ensure that it did not hurt,” doctors said.

The freaky looking child aroused the curiosity of neighbors who flocked to see the baby with two heads. The bewildered parents took their only child to local doctors for consultations but they categorically stated “the case is very risky, and mortality chances are very high”.

Consulted doctors at Apollo Gleneagles Hospitals in Kolkata
Despite the dismal prognosis, Khatun and Sahalam never gave up hope and landed at Kolkata’s Apollo Gleneagles Hospitals for discussions. Tofajjal was examined by specialists and they promised the best health care the little one.

A team of doctors comprising Dr Sisir Das, along with Kajal Das, neurosurgeon, Debasish Mitra paediatric surgeon, Sapna Sirohia anaesthesist successfully performed the complex procedure of removing the critical cyst similar to a second head form Tofajjal head.

Post surgery, Tofajjal, under careful monitoring is well on his road to recovery. With the heavy cyst removed, the little one is playful and has started moving around with ease. Tofajjal is likely to be discharged soon and will join the happy parents in a couple of days.

“This surgery was one of the most complex surgeries performed in this hospital till date. We are proud of being the only in the country to have performed such a surgery with absolute success,” said AGH CEO Dr Rupali Basu.

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