Mumbai: World’s heaviest woman, 500-kg Egyptian Eman Ahmed, will arrive in Mumbai on Saturday morning ahead of a bariatric surgery she is scheduled to undergo at Saifee Hospital.
An Egypt Air Airbus 300-600 freighter aircraft has been modified to fly Eman, 36, who has not been able to step out of her home in Cairo in 25 years because of her weight and attendant health complications.
The flight will take off from Alexandria’s Borg EI Arab International Airport and is scheduled to land in Mumbai at 4.10 am on Saturday.
With Eman’s weight and size proving to be a problem for regular passenger airlines to carry her, a freighter aircraft with a large cargo door and spacious main deck was the only option available.
Airline officials did several back-of-the-envelope calculations, after which the Airbus 300-600 freighter available with Egypt Air was zeroed in on. “We have finished calculating the aircraft load and trim, a legal requirement and crucial to the safety and structural integrity of an aircraft. It is important that the aircraft is loaded in such a way that the specified maximum allowable weights are not exceeded and the centre of gravity is within the permitted flight envelope and remain so for the entirety of the intended operation,” an Egypt Air official, who did not wish to identified, said.
Upon arrival, Eman will be brought out of the aircraft’s forward fuselage door and lowered into an ambulance using a cargo lift. The total volume available on the aircraft is 115.7 square meters and has provision to fasten Eman firmly so that she does not face too much inconvenience during the 5 hours and 50 minutes flight.
While a special ward that Saifee Hospital was building on the ground floor outside its main wing to operate upon Eman was demolished by the BMC because it did not have the required clearances, a new construction has begun not very far from this spot. The hospital remained tightlipped on Thursday on what the new construction was and if it was in any way connected to Eman’s scheduled stay at the hospital.
A dedicated team of doctors comprising Dr Muffazal Lakdawala, Saifee’s consultant bariatric surgeon, a cardiologist, a cardiac surgeon, an endocrinologist, a chest physician, two intensivists, and three anaesthetists will operate upon Eman and will also be involved in her post-operative care 24*7.
A tweet on Eman Ahmed’s condition by Dr Lakdawala has spawned an online campaign to raise funds for bringing her to Mumbai. External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, who responded to Dr Lakdawala’s tweet , has promised all help in bringing Eman Ahmed to India.
The surgery will be performed free of charge and Eman family will not have to pay for her post-surgery recuperation too. She is likely to spend at least six months under Dr Lakdawala’s care.
A hospital spokesperson said that they had identified a place where Eman’s surgery will take place, but refused to share details.
Sources said the surgery will not take place immediately after Eman’s admission. “She will undergo a battery of tests. Also, we need to examine her carefully before the surgery,” a doctor, who is on the panel which will monitor Eman, said.