An octogenarian woman in Delhi and her 90-year-old husband suffering from Alzheimer’s disease have recovered from the coronavirus infection and discharged from hospital.
Doctors at a city hospital where the elderly couple were treated said that their recovery from COVID-19 in the face of high mortality rate in the older population globally due to the infection is a ray of hope to other patients.
On May 25, the 87-year-old woman was rushed to the hospital after fracturing her hip, and she was advised immediate hip replacement surgery.
Before the surgery, she was tested for COVID-19 and was found positive. Following this, her family too underwent tests and her husband was found to have contracted the viral disease.
The couple was initially admitted at Indraprastha Apollo Hospital under the supervision of Dr Nikhil Modi, Senior Consultant of Respiratory, Critical care And Sleep Disorder, Institute of Critical Care, of the facility. Their vitals were regularly monitored, provided the required line of treatment and they made remarkable improvement within the first 10 days.
As soon as the woman tested negative, Dr Yatinder Kharbanda, senior consultant and orthopaedic surgeon, performed a successful total hip replacement procedure.
“People who are at an advanced age and have multiple comorbidities are the ones under maximum threat of COVID 19 and fatalities due to it. Their immune system gets degraded so much over the years that they become more vulnerable to infectious diseases,” he said.
Also, due to pre-existing conditions like heart disease, geriatric syndrome (fall frailty, dementia and impaired mobility) lung ailments, diabetes or kidney disease their body’s ability to fight infectious diseases weakens with time.
“In this case, the elderly woman was facing a lot of difficulties due to her fractured hip. We put her in traction with heavy bouts of cough and clogged throat. A team of doctors and nurses worked hard to provide medical care,” Dr Modi said.
The team in the critical care unit was kept on standby in case any complication arose.
“Simultaneously though her husband had mild symptoms, but given his age and multiple comorbidities, it was important for us to monitor his condition every minute,” he said.
Dr Kharbanda said, “Multiple health challenges pose a great risk to patient’s life. In such cases, patients can undergo a lot of trauma and shock which might affect the recovery process.”
But defying all odds, the couple was discharged from the hospital on June 22.