A very special delivery

A very special delivery

Dr. Krishna Kakani with Labor & Delivery Unit Nurses

Huntsville OB-GYN Krishna Kakani, MD, expects to deliver her 10,000th baby at some point in 2017.

It’s a remarkable milestone for one of the area’s longest-practicing obstetricians. January marked 31 years since Dr. Kakani joined the Huntsville Hospital medical staff.

Counting medical school and her OB-GYN residency, she has brought enough people into the world to fill all 9,000 seats at Propst Arena in downtown Huntsville and then some. Her legacy includes one set of quadruplets, three sets of triplets and more twins than she can count.

Last year, Dr. Kakani was recognized by the Women’s Economic Development Council Foundation for serving as an inspiration to other women. The emcee at the ceremony asked how many audience members had been through childbirth with Dr. Kakani. A sea of hands went up.

Raised in a modest farming family in southeast India, Dr. Kakani found herself drawn to nursing at an early age. A college counselor persuaded her to take the medical school entrance exam instead.

“During medical school, I found that I liked both internal medicine and OB-GYN and had a hard time deciding between them,” says Dr. Kakani. “But the more deliveries I helped with, there was just something special about the happiness. I call deliveries ‘birthday parties.’

“Complications can happen, of course, but most of the time it’s a happy ending.”

Dotha Cunningham, an RN who just retired from Huntsville Hospital for Women & Children’s Labor & Delivery Unit, watched Dr. Kakani in action for 25 years.

“We have a lot of wonderful, compassionate doctors, but she’s at the top of the list,” said Cunningham. “She is sad with the patient when sad things happen and rejoices with them when good things happen. You won’t find a more genuine physician.”

Dr. Kakani originally planned to work as an OB-GYN in her native India after medical school. That changed when she met her future husband, Babu Rao Kakani, who had left India to pursue a master’s degree in business from Alabama A&M University.

She joined him in the Rocket City in 1979 and completed an OB-GYN residency program in Savannah, Ga., before joining the Huntsville Hospital medical staff in January 1986.

More than 30 years into her career, Dr. Kakani remains passionate about mothers and babies and hopes to work for another decade before retiring. She said she draws daily inspiration from Mother Teresa, the missionary who devoted her life to helping the poor.

“I always think that if I could do just 1 percent of the good that Mother Teresa did, I would be so happy,” says Dr. Kakani. “One of her sayings is, ‘Not all of us can do great things, but we can all do small things with great love.’

“That’s what I’ve always tried to practice.”