Sai Shakthi Speaks and Smiles
Only By Bhagawan's
We present to readers an amazing
story of Sai Shakti, an eleven year old boy from Orissa. He had
been progressively unable to open his mouth to eat or speak
since the age of three. By Bhagavan's grace he had a successful
operation at the Super Speciality Hospital in Puttaparthy on 8th
September 2005. His faith in Bhagavan brought about the cure,
which could not be accomplished even in a teaching hospital in
All through the years the poor boy managed to push in with his
finger mashed-up food through the sides of his mouth, between
the teeth and the cheek, until the food went past the small gap
behind the last tooth. Although he attended school like any
other child of his age he was handicapped by his inability to
speak. He was affected by ankylosis (fusion of joint due to bone
formation) of the Temporo-Mandibular joint (T-M joint), the
hinge where the two jaw bones meet.
Initially the family sought help from a
teaching hospital in Orissa. After three months of
hospitalisation and procrastination, the doctors agreed to
perform the operation that was needed to have his mouth opened.
They wanted the family agree to an elective tracheotomy (making
a surgical opening in the throat for placement of a breathing
tube into the trachea or windpipe) for a safe anaesthetic, but
the family refused consent and took the boy home.
The boy's father, who happened to be working in Delhi, brought
Sai Shakti to see some specialists at an established teaching
hospital. They too maintained that the boy should have a
tracheotomy for a safe anaesthetic, which was an accepted
practice for a case like this. Once again the family backed off
allowing the boy's misery to continue.
Sai Shakti along with his family and
relatives attend Sai bhajans locally. Some devotees at the
bhajan, who had served as sevadals at the Super Speciality
hospital, suggested that they could try Swami's hospital in
Puttaparthi, knowing that the hospital provides facilities for
Plastic surgery, in addition to Cardiac, Urology and
Ophthalmology. With faith in Swami, Sai Shakti came to
Puttaparthy immediately with his uncle and consulted the plastic
surgeon. They were told that the operation was not a problem,
but the anaesthetist must be willing to administer the
anaesthetic without the tracheotomy. With some reassurance the
boy was referred to the anaesthetist for an assessment.
The senior anaesthetist reassured the patient and family that no
tracheotomy would be done. Preliminary investigations including
X-rays and CT scans were done, which gave a good image of the
deflections and diameter of the air passages from the nostrils
to the trachea. While the anaesthetist was happy to proceed with
the anaesthetic without the tracheotomy, the patient was alerted
to the fact that, in the unlikely event of a failed nasal
intubation, the operation would have to be abandoned.
Super Speciality hospital is well equipped, even with
fibro-optic intubating bronchoscope that is quite costly and not
generally available in most government hospitals, and teaching
hospitals in India , let alone charity hospitals. Bhagavan has
spared nothing to make such facilities available for the poor,
not to mention even the expertise of talented doctors.
The operative procedure is a kind of surgical
remodelling of the T-M joint with a prosthesis (arthroplasty) to
get his jaws opened. The plastic surgeon in Swami's hospital is
very experienced and had done this procedure several times in
his long career. The anaesthetist too has wide experience and is
familiar with procedures such as this. All staff involved in
this case looked forward to a successful outcome, with Swami's
Prior to admission the boy had spent a week in Puttaparthy and
attended darshan of Bhagavan in Sai Kulwant Hall. He had seen
Bhagavan going in the midst of devotees in His special
silver-metallic car. Sai Shakti was confident that Swami would
help him. He got admitted to the ward and the night before the
operation he had a dream. In his own words Sai Shakti described
to the operating theatre staff his overnight dream:
"Swami entered the Kulwant hall in His
car from the ladies side. When the car reached
the middle of Kulwant hall it suddenly turned
left and headed towards the Gopuram. I got up
and ran towards Swami and He lowered the window.
I stretched my hand out to Him and Swami gave me
a laddu and said, "Teesko" (take). I
hesitated, remembering my inability to open my
mouth, but I was surprised that I could
immediately open my mouth and eat the laddu that
Swami had given.
This dream experience has given me
confidence that my operation would be
successful, so I am not frightened."
The boy was very happy and cooperative in the
operating theatre. The anaesthetist had no
difficulty in passing the breathing tube
(endotracheal tube) with the help of the flexible
paediatric fibro-optic bronchoscope guiding him.
Normally a blind nasal intubation without seeing the
larynx is very difficult, although very occasionally
it is still possible. On this occasion it was
Bhagavan's mercy that made everything synchronize to
make it a success.
The entire operation that lasted an hour and a half
went off smoothly. At the end of the operation the
mouth was kept open with a rubber wedge. The boy
recovered from anaesthesia smoothly. As he woke up
the first thing he saw was Swami's picture on the
wall and he said "Sai Ram! Sai Ram!!" Those were his
first words. He felt no pain and needed no
pain-killer. He was able to speak to the doctors and
nurses in the recovery area of the operating suite.
He could hardly hold back what he had experienced
under anaesthesia. We narrate the same, once again,
in Sai Shakti's own words:
"I saw a ball of
fire burst through the wall and Swami emerged from
it. He reached out to me and lovingly stroked my
cheek and jaw on the side of the operation. Then He
blessed me with His abhayahasta and merged into the
ball of fire, which disappeared into the wall. That
was sufficient for me to know that the operation
would cure me."
The remaining few days in hospital went
uneventful. He started eating normally and kept narrating his
wonderful experiences of Swami's grace and the cure of his
misery. He left the hospital full of gratitude to Bhagavan and
praise for the kindness of doctors and nurses who showed such
love and encouragement. Sai Shakthi as his name suggests truly
got his 'Shakthi' i.e., power from Sai. He was energised by Sai.
E-Magazine, January 2006