In just 48 hours of their installation at Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, the set of giant artificial lungs turned ‘grey’ on Monday showing the immense amount of pollutants in the air.
“The lungs were perfectly white when they were installed on Saturday but in 48 hours only, the lungs have turned grey,” said Dr SP Byotra, Vice Chairman, Board of Management, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital.
According to him, the artificial lungs are close to human lungs and work almost like human lungs.
“In one day, a human being inhales 10,000 litres of air. These artificial lungs contain automatic fans that intake only 10,000 litres of air in a day. The Hepa filters that are installed in the lungs closely replicate the human lungs,” said Dr Byotra.
In addition to this, he also said that earlier they used to see pink lungs while operating but for a while now, they are seeing lungs black as tar. Even the teenagers have black spots on the lungs now, he added.
The lungs were installed as a part of ‘Health Delhi Breathe’ campaign initiated by the hospital, Jhatkaa, a Bangalore based social welfare organization and Lung Care Foundation on Saturday.
Amidst this, the doctors at other hospitals also confirmed a rise in the number of patients in their Outpatient Department (OPD) facilities.
“The number of patients has shot up in last few days. Even the severity of the disease has increased. We have spurt of almost 20% to 30% in our OPD. These patients suffer from cough, breathlessness, sneezing, fever & respiratory distress,” said Dr Sandeep Nayar, Senior Consultant & HOD, Respiratory Medicine, Allergy & Sleep Disorder, BLK Super Speciality Hospital.
The doctor added that the OPDs are full of patients coming with problems like acute severe bronchitis, upper respiratory tract infection & exacerbation of asthma. Although, the effects of pollution are similar in all age groups, small children and elderly people are more vulnerable, said Dr Nayar.
On Monday, the overall air quality index was registered at 418 falling in the severe category.