Kochi: Overcoming legal hurdles, Devananda has donated a portion of her liver to her ailing father. The 17-year-old Devananda has now become the youngest organ donor in the country, according to the authorities of the Rajagiri Hospital in Aluva where the surgery was conducted.
P G Pratheesh, 48, who was running a coffee shop in Thrissur, constantly suffered from swelling in the leg. A medical examination revealed that he had liver cancer. There was no option but liver transplantation. His wife Dhanya, and children Devananda and Adinath were devastated upon hearing about the illness. But despite their best efforts, the family could not find a suitable donor.
When the family went to the Rajagiri Hospital, Devananda asked the doctor: "Would I be able to donate my liver to my father?"
As per the law, those below the age of 18 are not permitted to donate organs in India. Devananda scoured the internet. And she found that the court had given permission for organ donation by a minor in another similar case. But that organ donation did not happen.
Raising this contention, she approached the court.
The Kerala High Court gave permission for organ donation. The surgery, led by Dr Ramachandra Narayana Menon, was successfully performed at the Rajagiri Hospital on February 9. The medical expenses were borne by the hospital, executive director Dr Johnson Vazhappilly said.
Devananda is the Plus-Two student at the Sacred Heart Convent School in Thrissur.