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Responding to Afghanistan’s Critical Need, FMIC launches Adult​ Cardiac Services

cardiac-patient-bismillah.jpgBismillah Mohammad Yaqoub, age 59, is one of the longest serving staff members at the FMIC, having started work at the hospital as a driver in May 2007. 

Few years back, Bismillah began to experience shortness of breath and chest pain whenever he engaged in any kind of strenuous physical activity. He consulted with the cardiology team at the FMIC, and was diagnosed with coronary artery disease, a condition in which blood flow to the heart is constricted. Causes can be heredity, diabetes mellitus, smoking, stress, and high level of cholesterol.

As FMIC did not have any inpatient adult cardiac care consequently he was advised medical treatment and follow-up, while being close monitored. Lacking adequate savings to get treatment outside Afghanistan, the only option that was left for Bismillah was to take this advice and visit the cardiologists each 3 months.​ ​   ​        Watch Bismillah talking about his recovery ​  

​​While the FMIC has conducted over 2,000 closed and open-heart surgeries for Afghan children until 2015, the hospital leadership realized that it could do even more for Afghanistan’s medical sector by opening up its cardiac services to adult patients. By March 2015 FMIC opened the interventional cardiology services (Cath-Lab) for diagnosis and treatment of acquired and congenital diseases. Bismillah was its first patient. After undergoing an angiography, Bismillah was diagnosed with four heavily constricted arteries in his heart, and a surgical intervention was necessary. 

This time, though, the FMIC was able to offer Bismillah something more than just diagnostic care. The newly-formed adult cardiac division offered him the opportunity to undergo heart surgery (Coronary Artery Bypass Graft, CBAG) at the FMIC, with all costs covered by the hospital’s Patient Welfare Programme. 

Bismillah was quick to accept the offer, and became the FMIC’s first adult cardiac surgery patient.

He was operated on June 1st 2015, becoming the first patient in the history of Afghanistan having an On Pump CABG with 4 bypass grafts. The surgery itself was successful. Bismillah spent five days following the surgery under close observation in the hospital followed by an additional three weeks resting at home. Within a month, he was back at his job shuttling patients around the FMIC’s facilities.

“I was not afraid going into the operating room,” explains Bismillah as he takes a break from his job, “I knew these doctors had lots of experience, and conducted themselves with a high level of professionalism. Knowing these doctors, I became brave before the surgery and now I am happy, healthy and back at work, thanks to Allah and FMIC”.​