Hospital does six heart, double lung transplants in 18 months

Three months ago, R. Deivanayaki, a scientific officer at Kalpakkam, could barely walk. Talking for more than five minutes was a struggle, and climbing stairs, impossible.

Today, after a heart and double lung transplant, she can do all this and more, and is looking forward to running and playing with her 12-year-old daughter – something she has never before been able to do.

Even in a State like Tamil Nadu, which performs a record number of cadaver donor organ transplants – the highest in the country – a heart and double lung transplant is uncommon.

This is partly because the surgeries are complex and technically demanding, and also because there are not too many usable lungs.

Patients too have to be selected very carefully for these procedures, said doctors from Apollo Hospitals, which has performed six such surgeries in the last 18 months. “On an average, 84 per cent of donor kidneys are usable, 70 per cent of livers and 28 per cent of hearts. But only 19 per cent of lungs can be taken, partly because they are particularly prone to injury,” said Paul Ramesh, senior consultant cardiothoracic and transplant surgeon of the hospital, speaking at a press meet on Tuesday.

Heart and double lung transplants are required in case of specific diseases such as pulmonary hypertension, but in a majority of cases, they are necessary when patients come in with end-stage heart or lung failure, said Dr. T. Sunder, a senior consultant cardiothoracic and transplant surgeon at the hospital.

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Printable version | May 6, 2021 10:34:51 PM |

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