During the first week of my life, beneath my seemingly glowing angelic skin, not everything was as normal as it appeared. As the days passed, my skin color started turning yellow. I started regurgitating out and turned sluggish. As if I started paying out for my past life’s sins in eagerness; how else can one relate a childhood illness? I was examined by the pediatrician and was diagnosed to be suffering with ‘Neonatal Jaundice’, a condition that takes place soon after birth and is characterized by development of deep jaundice. I was given conservative treatment at first, which included a lot of intravenous fluids and allied medications.
My parents passed sleepless nights on my hospital bed, as in those days infant mortality was quite high and refractory neonatal jaundice was not a common phenomenon. Hopes were taking a jolt and gloom was the predominant emotion in my family. It was then that my pediatrician announced to subject me to an interventional procedure, exchange transfusion. This is a process in which the blood is made to pass through a machine in which the blood is filtered to thwart the toxic levels of bilirubin and other metabolites. I was made to undergo left sided exchange transfusion that very night; by that time my face had lost all its sheen and vitality & I had started getting dehydrated. But then as they say ‘faith will move mountains’, affection of my parents and competency of my doctor put me back on the pedestal of life, with double the vigor.
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