Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa is now speaking for a few minutes using a speaking aid, said Apollo Hospitals chairman Dr Prathap C Reddy on Friday. She had undergone tracheostomy – a small hole in the windpipe to connect her to a ventilator – which made speaking difficult.
Speaking on the sidelines of an event, Dr Reddy said the chief minister may not require intensive training with the speaking aid as her tracheostomy is only temporary. “The next step for her is to stand up and walk. She has been through a serious illness and has been on bed for several weeks,” he said.
The 68-year-old chief minister was breathing on her own most of the time and undergoing physiotherapy specific to each organ. “She is breathing on her own 90% of the time. After the sixth or seventh week, we found that all organs were functioning reasonably well. She is now getting a whole body physiotherapy – both static and active,” he said.
On November 19, she was shifted to a special room from the intensive critical care unit. The room is a personalised one which had the facilities of an intensive care unit, including respiratory support, a senior doctor said.