Heart transplant surgery is an organ replacing process between two humans. But this transplant surgery is more about that. So here we give full details about What is Heart Transplant Surgery.
In 2017, 64.34 million cases were found on Heart failure. And heart problems or Cardiovascular diseases like heart attack, heart failure, etc are more common in the USA. Where one person dies every 36 seconds, reports say that the estimate is 600k deaths every year.
But in this modern world, anyone can change their damaged organ with a new, healthy organ by a donation. Moreover, many hospitals and experienced surgeons are available around the world who provide you this facility successfully. Although, the chances of getting successful is 89%, which is pretty impressive.
But the reality is not very easy that you think. So if you want to know more, check this guide.
What is Heart Transplant Surgery? Full Details
Heart Transplant History and Overview
A heart transplant is a surgical operation, where your heart will be replaced with a healthy donor’s heart. When your heart doesn’t improve after any medication, the doctor suggests the patient go for a heart transplant. The chances of a successful heart transplant are good if you followed good care of treatment.
Most adults suffer from heart problems and heart failure happened over 65 years old people in most cases. Heart failure is a disease, where your heart muscles or valves go weak, damaged, and unable to work.
Heart Transplant Surgery Time depends on your present health condition, damage to your heart, and doctors’ analysis of your body. But in general, the surgery takes three to four hours if VAD (discussed below) is not attached to your chest. If VAD is attached then 6-8 hours are required for a heart transplant.
Heart Transplant History says the process of this heart replacement was first performed in 1905, university of Chicago. And this replacement surgery was first done by two well-known surgeons and biologists, sir Alexis Carrel and Charles Guthrie.
But did you know that world’s first successful human-to-human heart transplant was performed in 1967 with the help of Dr. Christiaan Barnard in the hospital of South Africa?
Heart Transplant Procedure Step By Step – 200
If your heart is damaged or goes disable to work then you suggested a heart transplant. Let’s say, you found the best heart transplant center and instantly consulted with the transplant coordinators. They analyze, manage and confirm that you are capable of a heart transplant.
If the transplant team analyzes that your heart is not capable of waiting for a new heart. Then they may attach a ventricular assist device (VAD). Or you can say a temporary treatment for your damaged heart that helps to work your heart until you get a new donor. It is an electromechanical pump that works the same as your heart. It is more commonly used for those who are not eligible for a heart transplant.
When you consult with the transplant team they verify these followings.
- Your body is appropriate for a heart transplant
- If you get benefits from other medication
- You need to assure that quit smoking
- Are you agree with the medication plan provided by your transplant coordinator
- Do you agree to wait until the matching donor found
- Do You or your family is capable to handle transplant situations
When everything is checked, the transplant team confirms that you are a good candidate for a heart transplant. Now they instantly start their next procedures. After your coordinators find the matching heart they will call you. Now comes your job.
Before going to the transplant center you need to check the following things
- Leave your home with an empty stomach
- Carry your medicines, doctors documents, phone, and charger
- If you have a ventricular assist device (VAD), then definitely bring the equipment.
- Bring everything possible that you feel require while you staying in the hospital
When you arrive at the hospital, doctors come, they check, analyze and confirm that you are fit enough for this surgery. Confirmation process is
- X-ray reports
- No present illness
- Regular medication and physical activities
Now comes the transplant procedure in the operation theater, where you can coordinate with the doctor’s team. They give you anesthesia to sleep during the surgery.
The procedure of heart transplant surgery
- Doctors connect you with a heart-lung bypass machine to maintain the oxygen-rich blood flow throughout your body.
- Then your surgeon opens your rib by separating the chest in the opposite direction. That helps the doctor to work on your heart comfortably.
- After That, disease hearts will be replaced with donors’ hearts by sewing.
This transplant surgery takes several times depending on the complexity of your heart and any previous heart surgery.
After the transplant procedure, you will go for ventilation under the intensive care unit (ICU). here they give some anti-rejection medicines because your internal system doesn’t accept the outsider’s organ for a couple of months. So anti-rejection medicines help your body to accept the new heart and reduce the chances of side effects.
During your ICU period, doctors team regularly monitor your health condition, immune system, blood flows, and other body functions. How long should you stay in the ICU? it depends on person to person, generally, for 30 days, you can expect.
- Before selecting the center, check their previous success rate on a heart transplant.
- Check your health insurance if your selecting transplant center matches the plan.
- Before going to a transplant center also Check their other facilities like transportation, after-surgery maintenance, health assistance, recovery period, total costs, etc.
- The usability time of a removed heart is only 4 hours. So you need to prepare and charge the phones all time to receive the message from the transplant center.
- Prepare yourself after getting notified because the transplant team doesn’t have much time to leave the donor’s heart outside.
So these are some step-by-step procedures for a successful heart transplant. Now we discuss the surgery’s facts, advantages, and disadvantages.
Heart Transplant Facts
Heart Transplant Donors are limited to heart receivers. Reports say that almost 4k people died every year before they found a suitable donor. It means 25% of waiting patients don’t live longer for a heart transplant.
Heart transplant cost depends on the country, hospital facilities, and quality basis. But there is no doubt that this transplant requires a high amount of money due to its advanced technology and highly authorized doctors. According to the Milliman consulting firm reports, heart transplant total cost is approx $1.38 million. In the USA organ transplant is more expensive, the average bill is $1,382,400.
U.S federal government takes the responsibility to arrange heart donors for some serious heart disease patients. Although, the receiver goes through various strict procedures to receive the organ. And all this process is maintained by the United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS), which manages the organ transplant system for some selected patients in the USA.
A successful heart transplant may give you a chance to live long. Reports say that after 1 year of transplant survival rate is 85%. Moreover, half the percentage of heart transplant people live more than 13 years. In this period many people do their hobbies, exercise, and other physical activities. Although, a heart transplant woman can go pregnant after consulting with doctors.
Rejection of a new heart is common in most people. Although, anti-rejection drugs are unique for every person. But these drugs need to be taken for a life that prevents the side effects of this transplant. If you are not conscious about the consumption of these drugs then you may face side effects like graft failure, cancer, infections, hair loss, weight gain, etc.
After transplant care is very much important for heart transplant patients. Because in this period you need to follow a healthy diet plan, regular physical activities, proper medication, rest, and other rules that are written by your transplant doctors. So make sure you or your caretaker is well known with your everyday plan after surgery.
FAQS Of What is Heart Transplant Surgery
Does a person die during a heart transplant?
It depends on your age, the complexity of the heart, and the experience of your transplant team. But the fact is successful heart transplant rate is 89% and death during this transplant rate is 11%. die during a heart transplant is more common in older people like over 40-50 years old male.
How serious is a heart transplant?
It is more serious than you think. Because in most cases your body doesn’t appreciate the donor’s heart. And continuously reject the activities that happened in your new heart. Although, antirejection drugs are available to adapt to the new function. But still, most heart transplant people died within a month due to its rejection and poor immune system.
How painful is a heart transplant?
The level of pain after transplant depends on your medication, care, and habits. But pain is common on the side of your chest, and other upper body muscles. And you may feel tired,
Swollen and lack of energy for several weeks after the surgery.