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Glacial burst wrecks havoc on its downhill path

Glacial burst wrecks havoc on its downhill path Sumesh Rajan Mumbai: 7 February 2021  A glacial burst in Chamoli district of Uttarakhand state in India on February 7 has caused massive havoc on its downhill path along the Dhauliganga and Rishiganga rivers.  The disaster occured after a portion of the Nanda Devi glacier broke off in Tapovan area of Joshimath in Uttarakhand.  The Tapovan power plant being constructed over the Dhauligana river and the Rishiganga power project across the Rishiganga river -- a tributary of Dhauliganga -- have been damaged completely with sludge overwhelming the projects, say local officials.  Over 150 people are said to have lost their lives in this disaster and scores are missing. Ten bodies have been recovered so far from the National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) power project site at Tapovan, said the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) officials. The missing persons are believed to be labourers working at the dam sites and villagers along the river. T

Hormone imbalance disfigures man, doctors scour for a solution


Story by Sagaya Fernando
Mumbai: 21 May 2018

A simple lump on the right side of the face at the age of ten has turned into a massive abnormal swelling in the past twenty years, scaring the 30-year-old man’s face, forcing him to lead a lonely life at his village called Kanekal in Anantapur district of Andhra Pradesh in India.

“I was just 10 years when a small swelling appeared on the right side of my face. My parents took me to an ear, nose and throat specialist at nearby Bellary town for a check-up and treatment. The doctor there told that a surgery has to be done to remove the growth. However, I did not go for surgery. And, by the time I was 15, the growth started swelling further, and we consulted doctors at St. John’s Medical College Hospital at Bengaluru for the same. After conducting tests the doctors there said that there is no cause for concern and I should wait till I turn 21, and then surgery can be considered,” says 30-year-old G Srinivasulu.

“However, by the time I turned 18, I started having breathing difficulty due to the swelling, and I was readmitted at St. John’s under the care of Dr. Ganapathi Bantwal. Several tests were conducted over a period of two to three months, and it was diagnosed that I am having excessive growth hormone as well as a thyroid disorder. I was given medicines for the same. However, the problem escalated further,” said Srinivasulu.

He further added, “A surgery was also carried out to remove the tumorous growth. But, the doctors informed that the surgery has failed to solve the problem, and I was discharged.”

He says, “No one in my family is affected by such a syndrome. All my siblings -- three elder sisters and two younger sisters – and my parents are healthy having no such problems.”

“Srinivasulu is suffering from McCune-Albright syndrome, having growth hormone in excess, a disorder that affects the bones, skins and several hormone-producing tissues. As a matter of fact, the tumor has become so big that his veins have become disfigured, and it is difficult to operate on him,” said Dr. Ganapathi Bantwal from the Endocrinology Department of St. John’s Medical College Hospital.

He added, “People with McCune-Albright syndrome develop areas of abnormal scar-like tissue in their bones, a condition called polyostotic fibrous dysplasia.”

Srinivasulu’s height is now 6 feet 8 inches because of the excessive growth hormones. This further led to bones becoming brittle, and the leg bones unable to take his body weight started cracking up.

“I underwent a surgery to replace my leg bones with a steel rod so that I can at least walk. The medical expenses which have run up to about Rs 10 lakhs till now have drained our finances, and some doctors say that another Rs 8 lakhs are needed to carry the treatment forward. However, due to lack of finance, I am not able to take treatment,” says Srinivasulu, whose father G Hampanna is a farmer with a small landholding. Unable to meet the medical expenses, he has sought government help.

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