A heart transplant is a surgical procedure to remove persons diseased heart and replace it with a healthy heart. Heart comes from a diseased person who is the donor. Heart transplants are only done on patients who have end stage heart failure or person suffering from severe coronary artery disease and all other medical and surgical management have failed. Heart transplant is just like a new pump, it improves blood flow in the body. No personality or behaviors changes happen. Heart transplant in India is not done in all hospitals but only in few hospitals has this facility.
Treatment Surgery India has been facilitating heart transplant patients from several countries in the world including Nigeria, Ethiopia, UK, Australia, Bangaldesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka and many others. The costs for a heart transplant in India are upto 50% less as compared to other developed countries, which makes India an ideal choice for this procedure. With a network of high killed cardiac care specialists, Treatment Surgery India can ensure safe and easy treatment packages.
Who requires heart transplant ?
In a condition of Heart failure person’s heart is damaged or has got weak. In this situation heart is unable to pump enough blood to meet the body needs.
The biggest challenge in heart transplant cases is scarcity of donors. Patients are very carefully selected and patient must be very sick to be eligible for heart transplantation.
Medical team at the heart transplant evaluates the patient and decides if patient is eligible for heart transplant.
There are 2 very basic tests done – an echocardiogram and a blood test called NT-pro BNP (a hormone that rises in the blood as a response to a failing heart). The echocardiogram checks the Ejection Fraction or EF which is a check of how well the heart is contracting.
Once patient is considered eligible for heart transplantation, he or she is put on the transplant waiting list for a donor heart.
Heart transplantation surgery takes about 6 – 8 hours.
LVAD (Left Ventricular Assist Device)
Since to find a heart donor is very difficult as the heart waiting list may be too long, patients can opt for LVAD (Left Ventricular Assist Device).
Left ventricular assist device (LVAD) is a pump, which is implanted into patients who have reached end stage heart failure. Surgeons implant LVAD which is a battery operated mechanical pump. This pump helps the left ventricle (the main pumping chamber of the heart) pump required blood to the body.
LVADs are were earlier used as a temporary cure for people waiting for a heart transplant, but are now commonly used as permanent treatment for heart failure.
Doctors may recommend LVAD in 3 conditions:
Till the time patient gets heart LVAD is implanted in a patient waiting for a heart transplant, this is called Bridge to Transplant. The patient’s LVAD will remain till the time a heart donor becomes available and patient can go for heart transplant
In case patients condition does not suggest heart transplant, doctors / surgeons may decide to implant LVAD as a permanent solution to the medical problems patient is facing. This is known as Destination Therapy.
In a very rare situation when doctors expect temporary heart failure and expect the heart to recover, doctor decide to implant an LVAD till the heart of patient recovers. This is called Bridge to Recovery.
How long does it take for the entire process?
Depending on how quickly a donor match is found, the entire process can take upto from a few weeks to even months. The surgery itself takes 3-4 days of preparation and testing. After you’ve had surgery to place your donor heart, you’ll likely remain in the hospital for a week or two.
Are there any precautions that need to be taken after a heart transplant?
Yes, you’ll have regular tests for upto 3 months after the heart transplant, including blood work, lung function tests, echocardiograms, electrocardiograms and heart biopsies to ensure that everything is working smoothly.
What are the risks associated with Heart Transplants?
The most common risks after a heart transplant are infection and rejection. Without having to take medication to keep the body from rejecting the new heart, many heart transplant recipients lead a long and productive life.
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