Doctor who was part of Eman Ahmed’s treatment resigns, says ‘today I feel angry’

What started out as a ray of hope for Egyptian-born Eman Ahmed, believed to be the world’s heaviest woman, quickly turned into a spat between the patients’ family and her doctors over her progress. In a video that went viral, Eman’s sister Shaimaa Selim alleged that Eman was still unable to speak or move, quite opposite of what the hospital claimed. The latest development has thrown spanner in the recovery of Ahmed who was flown down to India from Alexandria in early February this year for her obesity treatment. One of the doctors, who was a part of the bariatric surgery along with Mufazzal Lakdawala, has reportedly resigned from the care of Ahmed with immediate effect.

In a Facebook post on Tuesday, section surgery chief at Saifee Hospital Doctor Aparna Govil Bhasker wrote: “I hereby resign from the care of Eman Abd El Aty with immediate effect.”

“We put our heart and soul into her care. No stones were left unturned. The team of doctors, nurses and physiotherapists toiled day in and day out to make this one patient live,” she added. Eman, who weighed over 500 kg when she came to India on February 11 this year, now weighs around 171 kg.

This is what she wrote:

Full text

I HEREBY RESIGN FROM THE CARE OF EMAN ABD EL ATY WITH IMMEDIATE EFFECT Some incidents in our lives change us forever at a very basic level. 3 months back I flew to Egypt to help Eman to come to India and the rest is history. Cut to today and I promise that when my 3 year old son grows up, I will not let him take up medicine as a career. I write this with great anguish that medicine is a thankless job. I had thought that Eman’s case would go down in annals of medicine as one of the biggest medical challenges ever overcome. I feel extremely saddened today that though the challenges have been overcome, it has created history but of a very different kind. We put our heart and soul into her care. No stones were left unturned. The team of doctors, nurses and physiotherapists toiled day in and day out to make this one patient live. We didn’t just provide medical care, we fell in love with Eman. She became our obsession. Even my 3 year old son made peace with the fact that in his mother’s life at the moment Eman aunty takes precedence . I guess medicine makes you soft and compassionate and empathy tends to overshadow all other emotions. But today I feel angry and deeply dissappointed. Unfortunately Eman’s case is an example of the worst kind of assault that a patient’s family can do to a doctor. It will be an example for patients to learn how to use the hospital system to your advantage by hook or by crook. It will be an example to follow for uncaring relatives that one can just dump their sister in a hospital and have the best time of their life. It will be an example for young doctors that they must never ever go out of their way to help someone and save a life because it can backfire badly. It is an example which proves that doctors must play safe and defensive and never take up challenges. What her sister has done is worse than physically assaulting a doctor. She has broken the bond of trust between doctors and patients. I am appalled at the irony that today when Eman’s health is the best that it has ever been in last 25 years, her sister chooses to go down this path. We do not need to prove anything to anyone as the truth is out there for all to see. I protest against any kind of assault on doctors and I reserve the right to refuse. I believe that if a patient or her family does not have faith in her doctors or hospital then they must look for an alternative. It should also be an example to younger doctors that you do not have to take things lying down. I hereby officially resign from the care of Eman Abd El Aty with immediate effect. Dr. Aparna Govil Bhasker Section Chief- Bariatric Surgery, Saifee Hospital, Mumbai

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