A TWO-month-old Spanish girls life was saved with pioneering heart surgery in Hospital Gregorio Maranon, Madrid.
A two-month-old Spanish girl’s life was saved with pioneering heart surgery Hospital Gregorio Maranon said on Monday, May 17. According to Reuters, doctors transplanted a small heart from a donor with a different blood type.
Juan Miguel Gil Jaurena, head of children’s cardiac surgery at the Madrid hospital, said: “It was twice the magic”, explaining that a technique like this did not yet exist for young children as little as three years ago and had never been performed on a baby so small.
This case paves the way to save more young children who are in need of heart transplants and are too young to use ventricular support devices until they get a compatible donor.
It was a complex operation due to the donor being in a different Spanish region and the heart had already ceased beating for a few minutes, meaning it required a recovery procedure. Information about the donor has not been released.
The baby girl, called Naiara, was diagnosed with congenital heart disease before she was born and only weighed 3.2 kilograms when doctors performed the ground-breaking surgery.
Manuela Camino, head of the children’s cardiac transplant unit said: “She is the smallest baby we’ve had for a heart transplant, and 24 hours before the surgery her condition worsened a lot. Had she not got a heart (transplant), she would probably not be here.” She is now recovering at the hospital.
Spain was the world leader in transplants last year, with 37.4 donors per million people, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO).
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