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HomeHealthFirst patient to receive pig heart transplant dies after two months

First patient to receive pig heart transplant dies after two months

Washington: The first person to receive a heart transplant from a genetically modified pig has died two months after the surgery was carried out, media reports said.

David Bennett, 57, had received his transplant on January 7 and expired on March 8.

In a statement, the University of Maryland Medical System, said: “His condition began deteriorating several days ago. After it became clear that he would not recover, he was given compassionate palliative care. He was able to communicate with his family during his final hours.”

The surgery raised hopes towards cross-species organ donation which would have been able to solve the chronic shortage of human organs available for donations.

Muhammad M. Mohiuddin, MD, Professor of Surgery and Scientific Director of the Cardiac Xenotransplantation Program at UMSOM, said: “We are grateful to Mr. Bennett for his unique and historic role in helping to contribute to a vast array of knowledge to the field of xenotransplantation.”

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Following surgery, the transplanted heart had performed very well for several weeks without signs of rejection, the hospital said.

“Following surgery, the transplanted heart performed very well for several weeks without any signs of rejection. The patient was able to spend time with his family and participate in physical therapy to help regain strength. He watched the Super Bowl with his physical therapist and spoke often about wanting to get home to his dog Lucky,” the statement said.

“We have gained invaluable insights learning that the genetically modified pig heart can function well within the human body while the immune system is adequately suppressed,” said Dr. Mohiuddin. “We remain optimistic and plan on continuing our work in future clinical trials.”

Bennett came to the hospital in the eastern US state of Maryland in October 2021. He was bedridden and placed on an emergency life support machine. He had been deemed ineligible for a human transplant owing to his poor health condition.

It was then decided to transplant a genetically modified pig’s heart that can function well within a human body.

According to reports in the US media, Bennett was convicted of stabbing a man several times in 1988 after which the victim was paralysed and was in a wheelchair till death in 2005. However, he was given full medical attention despite his past criminal records.

India Blooms News Service

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