My stomach was lately giving me problems. Indigestion, acidity and occasional stomachaches. Kept on resorting to symptomatic treatment which included taking antacids & various ayurvedic & gharelu medicines regularly. One of these days I had a terrible spasmodic abdominal pain, which could be handled only by getting immediate Inj Voveron. I somehow had some sleep in the night, and then decided to get the problem checked properly. Few years back Dr Ravi Kusumakar, a well-known Radiologist and an equally good person, and also a close acquaintance had told me about a Gall Bladder stone, and that is what I suspected; so I went to him and he confirmed not only the existence of one large stone, but more smaller ones plus thickening of the Gall Bladder wall. He immediately referred me to a well known Surgeon Dr Amitabh Goel. MS., for further opinion. The doctors suggested immediate operation – Cholecystectomy, complete removal of Gall Bladder. Dr Amitabh Goel specializes in Laproscopic surgeries, so we decided to go for it immediately.
The Surgeon: Dr Amitabh Goel:
It was a pleasure to meet Dr Amitabh Goel. He is a warm, positive & ever-smiling doctor. Someone who exudes hope & also good health. Apart from being a good person, he is highly respected as a good surgeon too, who loves his job and has specialized in various new systems & technologies, like Laproscopy etc. It is always a pleasure meeting people who love their jobs and also exude positivity. Dr Amitabh Goel was kind enough to give me a time-slot on a day when he already had three surgeries booked. In the meantime I had got admitted in one Sahaj Hospital, which has good facilities for endoscopic surgeries, and overall had good clean & caring ambiance. I got admitted in the Hospital on 25th May 2015 morning, and immediately various pre-operation tests & preparations started. By afternoon I was declared ready for the operation, and Dr Goel, who was outstation earlier night had come to the city and took up my case first. He earlier explained that while his priority will be to operate by laproscopic method, but he legally needed permission to resort to open surgery in case the situation so required. All formalities over & papers signed, I was taken inside the operation theatre by 1.30 PM. The operation was supposed to last for 15-20 mins, however when the doctor did not come out for more than 45 mins, our devotees & disciples started getting a bit worried. The doctor finally came out after 50 mins with a tray carrying the Gall Bladder and its various precious gems :).
Dr Amitabh Goel told that the timing of the operation was very good, because the condition of the Gall Bladder had become really bad. One of the smaller stones, and there were dozens of them, had blocked the bile duct thus choking the bladder and also an artery. This not only stopped the blood supply to the bladder, but it got fully inflated. Necrosis and Gangrene had set in one part of the Bladder and it was so full of bile that it could have burst inside anytime creating a possible more serious condition. At one moment the doctor even thought of doing open surgery to handle the situation, but even at the risk of extending the duration of the operation, decided to first give the endoscopy a fair & challenging trial. He punctured the bladder, sucked out the bile with suction pipes, deflated it to make the situation managable. This is what made the operation longer than expected. However Kudos to Dr Amitabh Goel and his team that the operation was successful. Later I saw the video recording of the operation too.
The hopital staff took good care of me after the operation, and ofcourse some of my disciples did amazing service & tapasya the following night. Noteworthy are Swamini Amitanandaji and Siddharth Arora, a research scholar at Oxford University and presently on visit to India. Many devotees kept on pouring in and were ready for any service required. Next day morning Dr Goel was there to see me, earlier than expected, and as things were all normal, he permitted me to get discharged by night itself after completing the i/v doses of antibiotics. I was feeling very light, as the main source of the problem was removed. I was taken for a walk around hospital in the evening, and by night I could drive myself back to my Vedanta Ashram, which was around 5 Kms from the hospital.
Dr Goel checked the progress after four days and then again after another week when he cut the stiches. Now I am feeling much better. For six weeks I have been advised fat-free & spice-free light diet, which anyways I was taking because of the various stomach problems. So it was all fine for me. One very amazing & positively surprising thing which happened after the operation was a drastic reduction in my blood sugar levels. I am an old diabetic, and was managing my blood sugar with medicines, Inj Lantus and controlled diet. Almost all the medicines became half. So now because of this operation not only my stomach problems are over but even the diabetic condition is much better. Pancreas obviously believed nicely in the age old adage that ‘One should love ones neighbour’, and as the neighbour, the Gall Bladder, was not in good condition, so it was all agitated. No one ever indicated to me that some internal issues could precipitate diabetes too. So it was all a great blessing. In fact on hindsight I see that everything was a great blessing. The timely diagnosis & advise of Dr Ravi Kusumakar, the timely & professional intervention of Dr Amitabh Goel, the sewa of various people – everything was a great blessing in disguise. God is indeed all-pervasive and comes to us in so many forms.
by Swami Atmananda Saraswati
Founder Acharya of the International Vedanta Mission & Vedanta Ashram, Indore