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Heart Transplant Essay

In this paper about heart transplants I will be talking about the operation, and what needs to happen before surgery. Then I will be telling you about the beginning of all transplants and who accomplished it. Then I will talk about what a heart transplant actually is. After that I will tell you what the purpose of a heart transplant is and why we use this procedure. I will talk about the safety precautions and a lot of other dangers, or things that can go wrong in or after heart surgery. Then I will tell you the problems with getting a heart transplant.

After this I will describe what transplant rejection is and why it is so dangerous. The next thing I will be talking about is what medications you can take to help transplant with lower possibility of rejection. The last thing I will inform you on is who needs a transplant and why people would need to have a heart transplant. The operation The first part begins with finding a donor who is willing to give their heart for someone in need. The donors are usually involved in a horrible accident where they have become permanently brain dead or paralyzed. This is usually a result from a severe head or neck trauma.

After the donor is brought in to the hospital the nurses go to work by trying to keep all of the organs functioning properly with medications and a respirator. One of the hardest parts involved with the procedure is keeping the organs alive after they are removed from the person’s body. Once this happens the surgeons and doctors go to work on keeping the organs alive until they reach the receiver by putting the heart on ice it should last six hours so they are typically flown by air plane or helicopter to get there before the organs die. Step number two

This starts with removing the recipient’s damaged or diseased heart. Removing the damaged heart may be very easy or very difficult. This depends on whether the recipient has had previous heart surgery this is very common. If there has been previous surgery, cutting through the scar tissue may cause trouble and take longer for the removal of the heart to take place. Step number three This is the easiest step of the operations is the implanting of the heart to the recipitants body. This consists of five rows of stitches there job is wrong to connect the large blood vessels entering and or leaving the heart.

If nothing goes wrong in, or after the surgery the patients are allowed to return in around one week. The Beginning of Heart Transplants The idea of transplanting an organ was first introduced in mythological tales in ancient times. It evolved into more than tales after they started testing transplants in animals. The first successful transplant in animals was undocumented but scientists believe it dates from the B. C era. Who was the first to complete this procedure successfully? In 1967, a human heart from one person was transplanted into the body of another by a South African surgeon named Dr. Christian Barnard in Cape Town.

In early December, Dr. Barnard’s surgical team removed the heart of a 25-year-old woman who had died following an auto accident and placed it in the chest of Louis Washkansky, a 55-year-old man dying of heart damage. The patient survived for 18 days. Dr. Barnard had learned much of his technique from studying with the Stanford group. This first clinical heart transplantation experience stimulated world-wide notoriety, and many surgeons quickly co-opted the procedure. However, because many patients were dying soon after, the number of heart transplants dropped from 100 in 1968, to just 18 in 1970.

It was recognized that the major problem was the body’s natural tendency to reject the new tissues. Over the next 20 years, important advances in discovering different types of tissues t and drugs to help accept the transplants allowed more transplant operations to take place and increased patients’ survival rates. The most notable development in this area was Jean Borel’s discovery in the mid-1970s of cyclosporine, an immunosuppressant drug derived from soil fungus. On 6 Jan 1968, the first heart transplant in the U. S. was performed on Mike Kaspersky who was 54.

He only survived for 15 days afterwards, But this was the start of heart transplantations for Americans. Definition Heart transplantation, also called cardiac transplantation, is the replacement of a patient’s diseased or injured heart with a healthy donor heart. Purpose Heart transplantation is performed on patients with end-stage heart failure or some other life-threatening heart disease. Before a doctor recommends heart transplantation for a patient, all other possible treatments for his or her disease must have been tried.

The purpose of heart transplantation is to extend and improve the life of a person who would otherwise die from heart failure. Most patients who receive a new heart were so sick before transplantation that they could not live a normal life. Replacing a patient’s diseased heart with a healthy, functioning donor heart often allows the recipient to return to normal daily activities. Precautions Because healthy donor hearts are in short supply, strict rules dictate who should or should not get a heart transplant.

Patients who have conditions that might cause the new heart to fail should not have a heart transplant. Similarly, patients who may be too sick to survive the surgery or the side effects of the drugs they must take to keep their new heart working would not be good transplant candidates. Patients who have any of the following conditions may not be eligible for heart transplantation: • Chronic lung disease with loss of more than 40% of lung function. •Active infection. •Pulmonary hypertension. •Chronic lung disease with loss of more than 40% of lung function. Untreatable liver or kidney disease. •Diabetes that has caused serious damage to vital organs. •Disease of the blood vessels in the brain, such as a stroke. •Serious disease of the arteries. •Mental illness or any condition that would make a patient unable to take the necessary medicines on schedule. •Continuing alcohol or drug abuse. Problems with getting a heart transplant Patients with end-stage heart disease that threatens their life even after medical treatment may be considered to receive a heart transplant.

Potential candidates must have a complete medical examination before they can be put on the transplant waiting list. Many types of tests are done, including blood tests, x rays, and tests of heart, lung, and other organ function. The results of these tests tell the doctors how serious the heart disease is and whether or not a patient is healthy enough to survive the transplant surgery. The most common and dangerous complications of heart transplant surgery are organ rejection and infection. Immunosuppressive drugs are given to prevent rejection of the heart.

Most heart transplant patients have a rejection episode soon after transplantation, but doctors usually diagnose it immediately when it will respond readily to treatment. Rejection is treated with combinations of immunosuppressive drugs given in higher doses than maintenance immunosuppression. Most of these rejection situations are successfully treated. Infection can result from the surgery, but most infections are a side effect of the immunosuppressive drugs. Immunosuppressive drugs keep the immune system from attacking the foreign cells of the donor heart.

However, the suppressed immune cells are also unable to adequately fight bacteria, viruses, and other microorganisms. Microorganisms that normally do not affect persons with healthy immune systems can cause dangerous infections in transplant patients taking immunosuppressive drugs. Patients are given antibiotics during surgery to prevent specific bacterial infection. Patients may also be given an antiviral drug to prevent virus infections. Patients who develop infections may need to have their immunosuppressive drugs changed or the dose adjusted.

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