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Joint Surgeries Become a Family Affair in State

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Times of India
09 December 2010
By Radha Sharma
Ahmedabad, India

Many Go Under Scalpel Together To Save Money, Time
Brothers Mukundlal, Jayanti and Bharat recuperating at a hospital in Ahmedabad on Wednesday

Brothers Mukundlal, Jayanti and Bharat recuperating at a hospital in Ahmedabad on Wednesday

You may call it the great Gujarati joint family knee operation. Three brothers from a business family from Morbi – Mukundlal (70), Jayanti (68) and Bharat (63) – were operated on the same day on Sunday and are currently recuperating in a shared room.

Their logic for getting the surgery done en masse is that not only does it help to keep each other’s morals high, it also helps in saving time of family members who have to care for them during and post surgery.

"While Bharat, the youngest one, had got his left knee operated earlier, he developed problems in the right knee. Jayanti and I too were diagnosed with severe arthritis of the knee which required surgery. Thus, the family sat together and decided to get a single date so our sons don’t have to take frequent off from business," eldest brother Mukundlal told TOI.

While the three brothers have seven sons between them, they are being looked after by two sons and a daughter–in–law, while the rest are managing their gold business.

"We also have lots of people coming in to ask about their well being. It made sense to get them operated all at once so that we can get them on the recovery path together," said Dhiraj, the eldest son, who is looking after his father and two uncles.

According to doctors at Shalby Hospital, it is becoming a trend of sorts where two or three members of the same family get their surgeries done together.

"The family values are strong, especially in states like Gujarat, MP and Maharashtra, where youngsters want to look after their elders. But with the fast–paced lifestyle, it is believed that time is money. Hence, more people seem to be preferring the two or three–in–one surgery," said knee replacement expert Dr Vikram Shah.

In fact, Dr Shah was forced to open a triple–sharing room in his Shalby Hospital, when they started getting requests where multiple members from same families wanted to get operated and stay together. The room was created at the request of US–based Manjula, 57, who got her knees operated along with her in–laws Ummed, 81, and Kanta, 77.

"Manjulaben had planned a joint surgery for her in–laws and then decided to get her knees operated as well to save time and patient–care support needed from family," said Dr Rajendra Khambete, CEO of the hospital.

In another case, two sisters and one sister–in–law from Jalgaon got their knees operated together.

Doctors said it is common for several members of a family to suffer from arthritis of the knee. Moreover, a poor dietary habit is also causing the problem.

"Indians are anyways 15 per cent more susceptible to knee arthritis when compared to other people in the world," said Dr Shah.

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