Saturday, 3 October 2015

Second Heart by Dr. Sandeep Huilgol & Santosh Avvannavar: Book Review

There are several awareness campaigns towards heart-health often posted through social media. But how many times do we hear such health campaigns about kidneys? How many of us are aware of kidney related disorders? Will you believe that kidneys are considered to be second hearts? 

Author Santosh joins hands with Dr. Sandeep Huilgol in his book Second heart, to educate the readers about simple must-know information on kidneys through five short stories. Each of the stories talk of a unique tale where one of the characters suffers a kidney disorder. 

What stands out about the stories is the kidney related information are not forced on to the readers like how a book on medicine would do. Instead, they are subtly written, mostly falling behind the main scenes, though it forms the central theme of the book. 

On hearing the title, I assumed Second heart deals with love stories, perhaps, about second love. However, I realized I was terribly wrong when I saw the book cover and read the book blurb. 

How many medical professionals intend to share their medical knowledge apart from their practice? Here's Dr. Sandeep Huilgol, a nephrologist, who has come forward to create awareness about kidney diseases through five short fiction. 
Here's  a glimpse into three of the five stories:

Unforgotten Love, Love that Returned & Faith

This is a story of a medical student who feels betrayed after his girl end leaves him because of an acute kidney failure. However, there comes a touching twist at the end. It highlights the importance of kidneys. Kidneys maintain water and acid-base balance in the body and regulates the blood pressure. Warning signs that are not be overlooked are high blood pressure, blood in the urine, weak legs and swollen face. The story warns readers not to ignore such early warning signs as the protagonist did. 


Hope is a conversational fiction between kidney disorder patients, set in a dialysis unit of a hospital. Geetha visits the hospital for a temporary dialysis since two weeks. She meets other patients who are undergoing dialysis and Shashidhar, the staff nurse with whom she interacts to understand about kidney disorders in detail. The conversations throw light about kidney transplantation - finding donors, misconceptions that prospective donors are afraid of, and government's 'cadaver donation program') - urine reflux and diabetes as the major cause of kidney diseases.


This is a realistic story of a young girl, Maya, who flees home with her lover. However, in a distant land, she soon finds herself as a victim of flesh trade. She soon develops a kidney disease called PIGN (Post Infectious Glomerulonephritis) due to an infection, which can fortunately be treated. The difficulties she faces to return back to her home land makes this short story. It is a heart wrenching story that can give sleepless nights and a strict warning to those girls who ignore their families and blindly trust guys on the name of love. 

I wish more doctors like Dr. Sandeep come forward to share their medical experiences which can offer immense help and support, especially preventive awareness, to the general public. Hope all the readers get benefited by the book and please spread the message to your near and dears. 

My appreciation to the authors for their continued efforts towards social causes.

Reviewed for the Author

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book as a complimentary copy from the Author in exchange for a honest review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. 

Thanks to author Santosh Avvannavar for the signed copy. 

Title: Second Heart: First Heart Beats for Love, Second Heart Beats for Life
Authors: Dr. Sandeep G. Huilgol & Santosh Avvannavar
Publisher: Hoffen 
Pages: 78

Author Connect

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About the Book

The book encompasses five five different heart touching stories with simple narration to bring an awareness about the misconception about kidney (referred as Second Heart) issues among general public. These are partly based on true stories about individual experiences. The book attempts on non-technical handling of a technical issue through emotional stories.

About the Authors

Santosh Avvannavar: Santosh started his career as a consultant and Soft Skills Trainer. He did his college education from NITK, Surathkal. He functioned as a researcher at University of Eindhoven, University of Twente and Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore. He was also the Placement President, while he was working at IISc, Bangalore. He has over 25 publications of mostly research documents that have found their place in National & International Jour- nals. Also, he has done 16 conference papers and regularly functions as a writer of different articles for a national and worldwide daily paper. He is an advisor for different organizations. He is an author of Adhuri Prem Kahaniya, Dear Wife, Your Husband is not a Superhero, Second Heart, Get a Job WITHOUT an Interview, Be a B.A., Surrogate Author, Title is Untitled, Black, Grey and White, The Departing Point. 

Throughout his personal time he composes his thoughts in a website, namely www.amritafoundation.wordpress. com and ventures into fiction writing. He delivered semi- nars and training to more than 40,000 people in India and abroad over the span of 7 years. 

Dr. Sandeep Huilgol: Sandeep did his medical schooling from Karnataka Institute of Medical Sciences, Hubli and he underwent his medicine training at Mallya Hospital a lead- ing super specialty hospital in Bengaluru. During his medi- cine training he developed special interest in nephrology, which deals with kidney diseases. After having spent a year in the Nephrology department to complete his Masters at the University of Sheffield, United Kingdom he returned back to India to undergo further training in Nephrology and transplantation at Narayana Hrudayalaya, Bangalore. He has published articles on kidney diseases in National daily and an international magazine apart from academic publications and presentations. He is also part of an initiative, a journal which is trying to create a platform for the resident to publish academic articles. During his Nephrology training he has come across many patients with various problems other than medical which were more troublesome than kidney diseases. This prompted him to come up with an idea to create awareness among general public about the issue and he has given several talks to achieve this objective with which he is not satisfied yet and aims to reach a larger audience in future.

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