Barsha Man Pun to undergo liver transplantationDoctors say they have started correspondence with foreign experts for suggestions on the right facility for transplantation.
CPN (Maoist Centre) deputy general secretary Barsha Man Pun has to undergo liver transplantation, as he is suffering from an acute liver disease.
Doctors attending to Pun said that now transplant is the only cure for him, as around 80 percent of his liver has already stopped functioning properly.
“We have recommended liver transplantation for Pun,” said Dr Yuba Raj Sharma, consultant gastroenterologist and hepatologist at Sumeru City Hospital. “The hospital for liver transplantation [within the country or abroad] has not yet been finalised.”
Pun was flown to Kathmandu from his home district Rolpa on Saturday, after a sudden deterioration in his health. Upon his arrival, he was admitted to the Pulchowk-based Sumeru City Hospital. Pun has been suffering from ascites for the last two months. Ascites is a buildup of fluid in the abdomen that occurs as a result of cirrhosis, a liver disease.
Doctors at the hospital extracted around two liters of water from his stomach.
“His health condition was serious at the time of his arrival at the hospital,” said Sharma. “We extracted water from his stomach and now his health is stable. Water build-up in the stomach means liver malfunctioning. ”
Vice President Nanda Bahadur Pun on Wednesday reached the hospital and took note of his condition. On Tuesday, Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal visited the hospital to learn about Pun’s health condition.
Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Bishnu Paudel also reached the hospital on Wednesday to inquire about his latest health condition.
Pun, who is also a former finance and energy minister, went to China on December 2 for follow-up treatment at the Shenzhen-based Third People's Hospital and returned to the country on December 20. His health issues—insomnia, skin itching, coughing, lack of appetite and vomiting–were reported to have resolved after treatment.
He has been suffering from hereditary hyper-bilirubinemia, a kind of jaundice, for a long time. The disease is called Crigler-Najjar Syndrome Type 2. His health condition worsened during the election rush in November.
Though liver transplant is available within the country, no decision has been made so far about where to transplant one in Pun.
“We have started correspondence with foreign experts for their suggestions on where to undergo transplantation,” said Sharma.
The Tribhuvan University Teaching Hospital, Human Organ Transplant Centre and Chitwan Medical College provide transplants with the assistance of foreign doctors.
Tribhuvan University Teaching Hospital, which started liver transplantation service in 2019, has carried out nine liver transplants since. All nine persons who donated their livers are safe and eight out of the nine patients who received the organs survive.
Doctors at the hospital said that one patient died after a month of transplantation due to the coronavirus infection. They say there is no queue for liver transplants at the hospital but finding the right donor is difficult.
According to doctors, donors must have a compatible blood type and liver anatomy (liver’s size) that is suitable for donation. Donors must also not have any serious medical conditions such as liver disease, diabetes, heart disease or cancer.
“I don’t know the actual health condition of Pun, but if a patient comes to our hospital for liver transplant we can perform such surgery within a month,” said Dr Ramesh Singh Bhandari, professor of liver, pancreas biliary gastrointestinal and liver transplantation at the Institute of Medicine.
According to Bhandari, the donor has to stay in the hospital for eight days and the recipient needs to be hospitalised for around a month—for 10 days of intensive care and another 20 days in the general ward.
Pun’s wife Onasari Gharti, who is a former Speaker of the House, said they were consulting with doctors, family members and others about what to do next for his treatment.
“As far as the transplant is concerned, we are discussing the matter with doctors and family members but haven’t made any decision,” Gharti told the Post.