Tamil Nadu tense as Jayalalithaa stays ‘critical’: 10 things we know about her health
Tamil Nadu has been put on high alert after chief minister J Jayalalithaa suffered a cardiac arrest on Sunday. Jayalalithaa is being closely monitored by an expert team of doctors at Apollo Hospital, where she has been undergoing treatment for more than two months.
Here’s what we know:
1) An emergency meeting of AIADMK party members, is on to discuss a possible successor. According to the channel, the party may back O Panneerselvam, who has been Jayalalithaa’s trusted lieutenant.
2) Apollo hospital, where J Jayalalithaa is being treated, has released a short statement, saying the Tamil Nadu chief minister is “very critical.” Apollo said she continues to be on life support systems.
3) The Centre has dispatched a team of specialists from the All India Institute of Medical Science to Apollo Hospital in Chennai. The team includes pulmonologist Dr GC Khilnani, anaesthetist Dr Anjan Trikha, cardiac surgeon Dr Sachin Talwar and cardiologist Dr Rajiv Narang.
4) She had a heart surgery, her party said. According to party spokesperson CR Saraswathi, there was an angio procedure done on the chief minister early Monday morning.
5) Jayalalithaa is on ECMO or Extra-Corporeal Membrane Oxygenation device. This is a life support system that helps provide oxygen to the body when the patient’s lungs or heart are unable to do so. ECMO is put in place when the patient becomes unresponsive to conventional CPR or Cardiopulmonary resuscitation. It works by draining blood from a vein and connecting it to an oxygenator machine. According to doctors, the patient can be on the device for several days or even weeks.
6) Sunday’s development comes after a 3-member team was rushed in to Apollo on October 7, which included a three-member team of specialists – a cardiologist, a pulmonary specialist and an anaesthesiologist. The hospital had earlier flown in a doctor from London who specialises in critical care and multi-organ failure. Dr Richard Beale had been treating her ever since she was admitted to the hospital in September.
7) Apollo Hospital on November 4 had released a statement that Jayalalithaa had “fully recovered” and was now “conscious and aware of things around her. But she didn’t leave the hospital.” A week later, on November 12, the hospital said Jayalalithaa was “fit to be discharged, and can leave whenever she wants to.
8) After weeks of confusion, Apollo came out with details of her treatment for the first time in the second week of October where the hospital said the treatment regimen included “continued respiratory support, nebulisation, drugs to decongest the lungs, antibiotics, nutrition, general nursing care and supportive therapy.”
The report made brief mentions of providing respiratory support to the TN CM, who has a history of diabetes.
9) Before Sunday’s development, Jayalalithaa was very much working from hospital. On October 29, she signed her party’s election affidavits with her thumb print, and not her signature, because her right hand was swollen and inflamed, according to doctors treating her.
10) The state, however, has been put on high alert. Tamil Nadu DGP has ordered all police officers and personnel to be on duty. In a communication to ADGPs of Enforcement, CB-CID, Economic Offences Wing and Crime wings, the DGP’s office today asked them to “mobilise all the officers in the rank of SPs and police personnel of other ranks of Enforcement, CBCID, EOW and Crime completely and they should report” to SPs and Commissioners of Police on Monday.
“They should report in full uniform with their vehicles for law and order bandobust duty until further orders,” it said.