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Heart Transplant & VADs

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When heart disease is advanced, they no longer improve with only medications. This is called Heart Failure and heart becomes weak. Patient will be breathless after a few steps or even at rest. They require frequent hospital admissions. This may be due to decreased blood supply to heart (coronary artery disease) or advanced valve problems. Then the only solution to such patients is Heart Transplantation- where in the weak heart is removed and replaced by a healthy heart from another brain dead donor. 10 yr survival is more than 70%. There are people who are living for more than 25years after transplantation. The longest survivor after heart transplantation is still living 35 years after transplantation in USA.

Dr.Gokhale did the first successful heart transplantation in the states of Telangana and Andhra pradesh in 2004. So far this team did 20 heart transplants. Dr Gokhale CT Associates also has the distinction of doing heart transplant successfully on a 69 year old man (oldest person to undergo heart transplant in India) in 2011.

 

heart transplantation in hyderabad
heart and lung transplant ward boy

Heart and Lung Transplantation

Sometimes both heart and lungs can get damaged severely - lungs may be because of untreated heart problem or heart may be because of advanced lung diseases. In such situations both Heart and Lungs need to be replaced by a healthy heart and lungs from a brain dead donor.

heart and lung transplantation images

Combined Heart and Other Organ Transplantations

In addition to the lung, when needed along with heart other organs can also be replaced. For example in a 57 yr old man who had advanced kidney and heart problem, Dr.AGK Gokhale and team performed the first simultaneous heart and kidney transplantation for the first time in India. These procedures carry higher risk but can be lifesaving for some patients who otherwise are unlikely to survive.

Patients, considered for transplantation, will have to undergo a thorough screening process to estimate their overall physical and psychological health. Based on the following factors, a thorough health history is taken, which includes inquiries regarding the following factors:

» History of Cardiopulmonary disease
» Exposure to infectious disease
» Exposure to environment
» Genetic & Family History
» Social history
» Substance-abuse profile

All potential candidates are identified by social services specialists to ensure access to required medications through a proper planning. A complete physical examination is performed, with particular attention to signs of concomitant disease processes such as bleeding, vascular insufficiency, GI disturbances, and occult carcinoma.

Heart (ventricular) Assist Devices-VADs

This is another option that is available for patients with heart failure. These devices, when implanted, take over the function of the heart partially, keep the patient alive until either heart recovers or patient goes for heart transplantation. 2 types of  devices are now available in India-CentgriMag for temporary support of the heart for 30-45 days and HeartmateII for prolonged support for a few months to years.