New Delhi: An Indian soldier found alive on the Siachen glacier six days after being presumed dead under 35 feet of snow was “extremely critical” and in coma, the army said on Tuesday.
Lance Naik Hanumanthappa Koppad continued to be in shock with low blood pressure, and has been put on ventilator in the ICU. The next one-to-two days are critical for the soldier, a medical bulletin said.
Koppad, who is from Karnataka, is being treated at the Army Research and Referral Hospital where he was flown in from Siachen base camp and admitted earlier Tuesday.
“He has been placed on ventilator to protect his airway and lungs in view of his comatose state,” the bulletin said.
“He remains extremely critical and is expected to have a stormy course in the next 24-48 hours due to the complications caused by re-warming and establishment of blood flow to the cold parts of the body.”
“He has pneumonia and his investigations have revealed liver and kidney dysfunction. Fortunately, there was no cold exposure related frost bite or bone injuries to him,” the bulletin said.
The soldier is being treated by a team of intensivists, neurologist, nephrologist, endocrinologist and surgeons. He has been given fluids and drugs to bring up his blood pressure.
Koppad and nine other soldiers were swept away by an avalanche at the Siachen glacier on February 3, at an altitude of 20,500 feet. He was found on Monday, miraculously alive.
The soldier was found to be conscious but drowsy and disoriented. He was also severely dehydrated, hypothermic, hypoxic, hypoglycaemic and in shock.
“He was immediately resuscitated at the site by doctors who had been there in the hope of (finding) a survivor,” the army said.
After emergency medical treatment, he was flown out by helicopter along with a medical specialist to the Siachen base camp. From there, he was brought to the Thois air base and then to Delhi.