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10-year-old boy successfully treated for rare fatal disease Hemophagocytic Lympho Histiocytosis (HLH) syndrome at HCG Cancer Centre

: 26-Mar-2021     : HCG Hospital     Source : HCG CANCER HOSPITAL

Mumbai, 26th March 2021: HCG Cancer Centre Borivali successfully treated a 10-year-old boy from Kabul, Afghanistan suffering from a rare Hemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis (HLH), a life-threatening syndrome in which an uncontrolled and ineffective immune response occurs with a five percent survival rate. The only curative option for this is allogenic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation.

Rasheed (name changed) was presented at HCG Cancer Center Borivali with hemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis syndrome. He was diagnosed with type 3 by mutations in the Munc 13-14 (UNC13D) gene which is fatal. When he was presented at HCG hospital the patient had developed a hearing problem and loss of vision in his right eye. Little did Rasheed’s parents know that a minor fever in 2018 would turn out to be dangerous and a threat to their sons’ life. His immune system completely damaged, even the smallest infection harmed him. Initially, in 2018 he was taken to Pakistan for treatment where the doctors were unable to diagnose the disease post which he was taken to Dubai for treatment where his father was working as a taxi driver. He was diagnosed with hemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis syndrome by the doctors in Dubai and despite treating him immediately his condition deteriorated.

Due to rapidly developing visual and hearing loss the patient was advised to undergo a stem cell transplant by the doctors in Dubai. His elder brother had also expired 4 years back due to a similar illness. When Rasheed’s health started deteriorating, he was asked to go to India for further treatment as stem cell transplant was not available in Dubai. One of his father’s colleagues who was residing in Mumbai advised them to consult Dr. Suraj Chiraniya from HCG Cancer Centre Borivali for further treatment. Initially, they had a video consultation with Dr. Suraj, and immediately after consultation the patient’s family readily agreed to come to India for further treatment.

Initially, due to the Covid-19 crisis, travel restrictions, and visa issues his treatment was delayed. It seemed like it was difficult to travel due to the overall adversity. But Dr. Suraj and his team at the HCG team did not give up easily. Against all odds, the young pediatric patient finally reached India with his family. The treatment was started immediately upon his initial evaluations and the doctors prepared for the transplant procedures. Due to liver and brain involvement, it was a high-risk stem cell transplant.

After explaining the high-risk consequences to the family and taking their consent for the treatment, high dose chemotherapy was performed on the patient to destroy the defective bone marrow. Fortunately, Rasheed’s only sibling who had accompanied him was a fully matched donor. Collection of stem cells from the donor by non-operative procedure with help of apheresis machine was conducted and stem cells were infused. Due to his family’s financial background, Dr. Suraj helped the patient family to raise funds through online fundraising platforms.

Dr. Suraj Chiraniya, Hemato Oncology and BMT, HCG Cancer Centre Borivali, Mumbai said, “The primary Hemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis (HLH) due to the genetic cause is an extremely fatal condition. The post-transplant period in HLH is a major challenge because 40% of patients suffer major health issues. Rasheed underwent stem cell transplantation and as it was a high-risk transplant patient suffered major life-threatening complications like severe Veno-occlusive disease, Candida parapsilosis sepsis, steroid-refractory Grade IV gut GVHD. He also developed multi-organ dysfunction in the liver, kidney, and lung. But with extreme care and dedication, we were able to do the transplant successfully”.

“With this successful transplant, 3 years of pain and misery is now over. We had thought we would lose him like our elder son and had completely lost hope in life. But it was Dr. Suraj Chiraniya and his team at HCG Cancer Centre who gave my son a new lease of life and made him stay positive throughout the treatment. I heartfully thank the doctors and the management here” said Rasheed’s father.

A multidisciplinary team of specialists consisting of medical oncologists, surgical oncologists, pathologists, radiologists, physicians, and anesthesia provided optimal and supportive care to the patient and is discharged now. The expertise of the doctor and the technology helped in improving the quality of life and increase the survival rate for the patient. The patient can now lead a normal life without any complications.

HCG Cancer Centre Mumbai
HCG Cancer Centre is the first dedicated Comprehensive Cancer Hospital in Mumbai, India founded with the aim of providing consistently high quality and result oriented cancer treatment by adopting global innovations. With the latest technology and expertise to treat cancer HCG Cancer Centre is emerging as one of the Best Cancer Hospital in Mumbai, India.
HCG Cancer Centre is a state-of-the-art comprising of 119 beds along with oncology facilities. The hospital provides quality cancer care through Surgical Oncology, Radiation Oncology & Medical Oncology, all under one roof with a complete range of diagnostics.

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