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Near future 2030 AD..

“Baba tell us again that story of operation theater”.

Two cute grand children surrounded me.

“Which story you want to hear my dear?”

I was damn tired and not at all in any mood to talk to, but you cannot avoid grand children. That right is reserved only for their parents.

“Not about any patient or surgery Baba, but in which you tell about, many people had to gather in certain place, at the same time, to do surgery. The operations were done in a big room, which had no doors and windows etc.”

“Oh, that one, I will repeat it again for you, but no body will interrupt me while I am narrating.”

They agreed and fixed their gaze on me, with full curiosity.

“I was then 35yrs, in my prime youth, full of energy. Our life was full of labour. We had to go to the working places allotted to us. Everybody’s office hours were at the same time i.e 10 AM to 05 PM.”

“But Baba, our biological clocks are different”. Said, one of them.

“Then the concept of biological clock, and to make use of it to get best out of you , was not existing”, other fellow gave him reply, before I could speak out.

I was astonished with his reaction. That reminded me of an article, I hac read about the same in 1980’s in Readers Digest. They had just started to think about it. It was a common observation that few people do well at night, where as few in afternoon. Every one has a clock ticking inside, which is quite different from the watch. It does not match the worldly clocks.

This has wonderful applications. Early morning is the best time to study math’s. It is possible that 6 Am of your biological clock does not match the standard time, but you have to go according to your own body time, may it be afternoon according to worldly time and sun.

It was then thought that one should have the liberty to work according to his body clock to get best out of him. Ways to know about your bio clock were found out, like recording your temperature every half an hour and calculate it by some formula. Now it has become so simple. You just stick an electronic strip in the medial aspect of your thigh and it displays your bio-time, how many hours you are ahead or behind the standard clock. Probably that is more important than to talk of Greenwich line.

You can employ the persons, taking into consideration of their bio clocks. You should employ a night watchman, having his bio day during our night hours. Similar is matrimonial. We should advertise, “the bride is needed for a beautiful employed Brahmin girl, 5.5”, slim, fair, expert in house chores, and Bio- minus 10 hours. Closest match is desirable”

It means it is afternoon 3 PM for her at night 1PM, when most of us are unable to remain awake. She is alert and fresh, because it is afternoon for her. I know a lady doctor who once said, people call me queen of the night. I become fresher as the night deepens. No wonder she was bio minus 9 -10.

The girl will not slumber when the boy is in full mood of romance.

I regret, if this concept had come 40 yrs ago, I would have had a better marital life. My wife had to open the door for me at 10 PM, when I used to be back from my clinic and post operative rounds. I had to bang the door for 15 mts, before she came. I used to be very eager to tell her all about my day, but she hardly opened her eyes. Then it was my routine to yell over her while locking the door, that you are sleeping as if it is 2 AM midnight. What is the fun of coming back home if you get such type of reception? Leave aside waiting for dinner; you don’t have even the courtesy to open your eyes for me! Now I repent on shouting on her, because I know she was minus 4 hours bio, and it was really 2 AM midnight for her!

The communication was not so strong. Our PC’s were not hooked together so efficiently. Leave aside the computers; many of us did not have telephones also. At that time, the computer, which your father wears on his wrist, was as big as your T.V set.”

“So they used to hang their computers on the wall?” asked one of them.

I had forgotten, the age old T.V, which used to require a sturdy trolley, had become obsolete and had become like a calendar since long.

“Baba you were telling us about surgery and the operation theater” one of them reminded me.

Elderly divert too much from the actual subject. We are least concerned about the reaction of the audience. It is a great pleasure for us to have someone around us to listen to. By this age you have gathered lot of matter to speak about, but no body has enough time to give you his ear. Grand children are the easiest pray.

“So I was telling you, all of us used to gather at 8 AM in the place called operation theater”. Children again became attentive.

Table on which patient was made to lie was called the operation table.

Now a days patient is placed in a glass chamber of 6’x3’x2’. Robotic arms extending into the chamber, controlled remotely, do the surgery. The chamber is sealed off and there is continuous flow of sterile oxygen in it, so there is no possibility of any infection to occur. You even have the luxury to listen to your favorite music channel and talk to your relations while you are in that operation chamber.

Since our patients are exposed, we were supposed to change our dresses, wear cap and mask to cover our head, mouth and nose to prevent infection.”

“Why head?” asked one of them.

“I forgot to tell you that we used to grow our hairs and moustaches. It is now for the last 15 yrs that people are shaving their heads also for hygienic purpose. One funny thing, many age old traditions of our country, what we have followed since ages, come back as a fashion, few centuries later. We appreciate the same, when it comes back from western world. Yoga became popular when west adapted it and told us the importance of it. In our childhood we used to see clean shaved Brahmins with a tuft of hair in back. We used to call it an antenna and used to make laugh of them. Now we know that it is the superficial landmark of pineal, the supreme hormone gland, and this tuft of hair keeps its temperature controlled, any way!

On the head end of the patient used to be our anesthetist. He was there to make the patient unconscious. It was not like now, when you remain awake and get operated without any pain. These wonder analgesics were not available. Now the patient himself controls his pain; he pushes few drops of the drug when he feels pain. Gone are those days, when we used to give tentative amount of anesthesia drug, which was either not enough, or was too much!

To make him unconscious was necessary, as the sight of own blood is frightful. Now surgery is done with laser beams, which seals off the blood vessels, before the blood comes out; then we used to operate with knife.

“Just as we cut vegetables and fruits baba?” asked one with wide eyes.

Yes of course. We faced so much of problems then to acquire blood. Convincing people to donate blood was a big job. Transfusing blood was very risky and at times life threatening. You cannot imagine that because now you can buy the synthetic blood from any medical store. It started way back in 1990’s in Japan. That solved the great problem also of the transmission of diseases through blood, apart from it’s availability.

I would not blame you because I could not imagine as to how the people used to collect urine of patients and retrieve antibiotic Penicillin from it, about 90 yrs ago. Later on we had a big array of antibiotics by 1970’s.

“What is an antibiotic Baba?”

It has become obsolete now, as now we do not need them. It was a drug used to kill the bacteria, which caused infection. As the more and more resistant bacteria were emerging, we were making more potent antibiotic molecules to kill them. It was an absurd effort, which seemed to be endless. Then is 1990’s we concentrated on efforts to increase our immunity, rather to make more potent weapons of offence. It was becoming clear that these drugs also killed our normal cells.

This is funny again, because our ancient science Ayurveda had been yelling for ages about the same. The stress of Ayurveda had always been not to fight the disease, but to increase your own vital power. They called this vital power as “Oj” and hence a healthy person “Ojaswi”. The Ayurveda is called as the knowledge of “How to live; it teaches you the way of life.” Once you have learned it, and gained enough vital power, no germ will be strong enough to make you ill. It is just a common sense, why does only one of the family member develop a certain disease, where as all of them are living in the same atmosphere and circumstances. It is just because he lacks the immunity for that particular germ, which the others have. He may escape some other disease, for which he is immune, while his brother may contact it.

Today ultimately we have come to agree on the concept of the Ayurveda – don’t treat the disease, make a person immune to disease by modifying his diet and the way of life, i.e Ayurveda.

About 35 years ago we could develop a drug called “Immu mode”, which increased the immunity in a generalized way, not specific against any particular bacteria. Now you have Immu preparations available for specific bacteria like e Coli immu mode, Staphylococci immu mode and so on. You swallow the pill which will not kill any bacteria, but make your phagocytes kill it, and teach your bacteria how to deal with the similar bacteria in future.

Now you have vaccines for common bacteria like Staphylococci- causing boils, causing sound infections, Strepto cocci, causing sore throat, E Coli causing urinary infections, etc.

So I was telling you about the anesthesia. Drugs were few. My anesthetist needed intensive training to use them safely. We used to loose a good number of patients during surgery, at least 2 per thousand. Isn’t that sad? It is now that we have not heard of a single death on table since last 15 years, because the drug used for any patient is matched with a drop of his own blood and the molecule is tailored accordingly. Now there is no fear of hypersensitivity of any drug.

We have recorded video cassettes of our surgery. Of plunging knife, yelling of the patient at times, people holding him firmly to prevent him falling from the table, those streams of blood, our gowns getting smeared with it, relatives running for blood, anesthetist declaring about the shortage of time etc.

May be you would like to place those cassettes of our “Bloody surgery”, in the rack of your “horror movies”.