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PGIMER becomes first public hospital in India to successfully implement CAR T Cell therapy

Reported by:  PTC News Desk  Edited by:  Shefali Kohli -- September 09th 2023 06:54 PM
PGIMER becomes first public hospital in India to successfully implement CAR T Cell therapy

PGIMER becomes first public hospital in India to successfully implement CAR T Cell therapy

PTC News Desk: Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER), Chandigarh becomes first public hospital in India to successfully implement CAR T Cell therapy. 

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While briefing about some of the recent developments/initiatives undertaken at PGIMER, Prof. Vivek Lal, Director PGIMER said, “The organ transplant programme in PGIMER is one of the most prolific one with 4800 renal transplant surgeries done so far. What is heartening is that with 225 renal transplant surgeries done till date in 2023, we have already surpassed the numbers accomplished during the last entire year. Not only that, with Department of Urology also doing the renal transplants alongwith Renal Transplant Surgery, the waiting period for live renal transplant has substantially reduced from earlier 12-14 months to 2 months, helping in mitigation of suffering of the patients. This is a huge step forward.”

“Even the organ transplant programme for pancreas, liver and heart has picked up good pace with successful outcomes, reducing the waiting period for the hapless patients. Adding to this, another milestone accomplished in the transplant programme is the successful living donor liver transplant (LDLT) on a 46-year-old male patient from Uttar Pradesh on 7th August 2023. The liver was donated to the recipient by his wife. Both the recipient and donor had an uneventful recovery. The donor was discharged after seven days of surgery. The recipient was discharged on the 26th postoperative day, i.e., the 2nd of September, 2023,” shared Director PGIMER.  

“The patient had been suffering from chronic liver disease, and a liver transplant was the only survival option. He has been awaiting a transplant for the past three years. His wife donated 55% of her liver (Right liver) to her husband. The total time duration of surgery was around 12 hours. Both are doing well and are under regular follow-up. The immunosuppressant of the recipient is under close monitoring,’’ elaborated Director PGIMER. 

While complimenting Prof. T. D. Yadav, Deptt. of Surgical Gastroenterology , PGIMER and his team for  this accomplishment, Prof. Vivek Lal said, “Living donor transplants are routinely done in our country and help reduce the waiting period for liver transplants. In private hospitals, it usually costs around 35 lakhs. At PGIMER, it costs about 14 lakh rupees for both donor and recipient.”

The Director further said, “We have added another milestone by starting an exclusive Pediatric Bone Marrow Transplant Service at Nehru Hospital of the Institute.  Six beds have been approved exclusively for Paediatrics.  These 6 beds will be under Prof Amita Trehan, Incharge Paediatrics Hematology and Oncology, Department of Paediatrics.” 

“This is in line with the commitment of Govt. of India to provide affordable and quality transplant services in Government Institutions. Adult Bone Marrow Transplant Services under Prof. Pankaj Malhotra and Prof. Alka Khadwal will handhold the Paediatric Bone Marrow Transplant Services in Nehru Hospital. This will help in reducing the waiting period for children. Out of 520 transplants done till date, 84 were for children. With these dedicated beds, we will be able to cater to more children needing bone marrow transplants further reducing the waiting period,” detailed Director PGIMER.   

Detailing further on ground breaking therapies being implemented in PGIMER, Prof. Pankaj Malhotra, Head, Dept of Clinical Haematology shared, “The Department of Clinical Hematology and Medical Oncology at PGI Chandigarh has achieved significant success with a ground breaking cancer treatment known as Chimeric antigen receptor T (CAR T) cell therapy during a clinical trial. This innovative therapy was initially administered to a patient diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia on March 14th, 2023, followed by additional cases involving lymphoma and another leukemia patient. Encouragingly, all three patients have shown positive progress following the treatment. PGI Chandigarh is the first public hospital in India to successfully implement this groundbreaking therapy”

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Endorsing the need to create independent departments to further the impetus on patient care, the Director said, “To provide robust ecosystem for patient care, we need to create independent departments as has been seen from the prior experience that an independent department makes a colossal difference as far as the patient care is concerned and we are seriously considering to create independent departments in the near future.”

Another major step forward by PGIMER is the expansion of Paediatric Cardiology under Dr. Rohit Manoj and we plan to have 10 dedicated beds and 2 dedicated OTs for the same. The basic intent is to reduce the waiting list and assuage the pain of the patients, especially children.” 


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