Thirteen-year-old Vinayak (Vicky) Menon is one of the fortunate ones in a country where there are so many unfortunates.

His parents, Rekha and Manoj, are both business professionals. They work in Dubai where they enjoy a comfortably well-off life.

But, since the age of five, Vicky has had a heart problem and the time has now come to have it fixed.

With family connections in Bangalore, and after researching Vicky's disease and possible treatment on the internet, the Menons have decided that the Narayana Hrudayalaya hospital is the place where they would like Vicky to be operated on.
The deciding factor has been the reputation of Dr Colin John, one of the world's leading and most experienced cardiac surgeons.

Whereas many Indians are just grateful to see a doctor - any doctor - the Menons, with their education and means, have requested Dr John specifically and been very proactive in seeking out the best care possible for their son.

While Vicky is calm and unruffled during the consultations with John and the numerous tests that follow, his mother and cousin Rani are less so.

With knowledge - Rekha has even seen a video of a similar operation on YouTube - comes an awareness of the risk factors and what can go wrong. And Rekha has already had three other members of her family - her father and two brothers - die prematurely.

In a hospital which performs so many cardiac operations each year, it is easy to forget that open-heart surgery is a still a major operation and a risky business so Rekha has every reason to be anxious while praying for the best.

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Source: Al Jazeera