Tuesday, January 19, 2021

8-year-old anaemic girl suffers cardiac arrest mid-air, dies

Nagpur: An eight-year-old girl flying on a Lucknow-Mumbai GoAir flight with her father was declared brought dead at Government Medical College and Hospital (GMCH) after being rushed there following an emergency landing at 7.25am on Tuesday at Nagpur airport.

Ayushi Punavashi Prajapati, resident of Seheri Khat, Siddarth Nagar, Chaffa in Uttar Pradesh, and her father were on GoAir flight G8307. Officials said they appeared financially backward and the father could barely explain the girl’s condition.

The exact cause of Ayushi’s death is not known. GMCH officials said the viscera samples have been preserved to ascertain the cause of death. Prima facie, they said it appears she collapsed due to cardiac arrest triggered by high altitude.

“She was anaemic. The father had not disclosed this, else he would not have been allowed to board the flight. Patients below 8 to 10gms of haemoglobin are not permitted air journeys. Ayushi’s records show she had just 2.5gms. They were going for her treatment to Mumbai,” officials said.

A medical team from Kingsway Hospital, which has a tie-up with Nagpur Airport, attended to the sick flyer as soon as the plane landed.

Kingsway’s emergency medical therapist Dr Mohammed Ahteshamoddin told TOI the girl was already on automated external defibrillators (a life saving device) when they rushed inside the plane. “The passenger was taken in an cardiac life support ambulance to GMCH for further evaluation. GMCH doctors declared her brought dead. She was unconscious, cold and not responsive. Her condition was serious,” he said.

The flight took off immediately after patient the and her father alighted. The girl’s father didn’t mention any medical case history to the airport medical team as well.

“She had some underlying diseases. But it may not be found out through post mortem. The viscera has been preserved. Sudden death can be attributed to cardiac arrest at the moment. The death is natural. Entire medical history will have to be studied in case the family submits it,” GMCH officials said.

Officials said oxygen demand is more at high altitudes. “As soon as the journey started, she complained of breathing difficulty and an emergency landing was done. The father was not disclosing even after she suffered cardiac arrest. The crew members searched their bags and found blood reports of the girl stating she had 2.5gms of haemoglobin. Covid test was done and found negative. At 6pm, the body was handed over to the father, who took it by road to their native place, about 200km ahead of Lucknow,” officials said.

19/01/21 Sarfaraz Ahmed/Times of India

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