The smallest baby on the transplant waiting list in the UK receives a new heart | Society – tech2.org

The smallest baby on the transplant waiting list in the UK receives a new heart | Society



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The youngest patient on the transplant waiting list in the UK has had a heart operation that saved lives.

An appeal was launched at European level for Charlie Douthwaite, an eight-week-old baby born with half a heart. The child had hypoplastic left heart syndrome, a condition that leaves the left side of the organ underdeveloped.

The surgeons performed a nine-hour operation at the Freeman hospital in Newcastle after finding a donated heart in a matter of weeks, instead of the months or even years it can take.

His mother, Tracie Waite, thanked the donor's family for the "most valuable and inestimable gift that could ever be given."

"They gave our baby a second chance in life and because I will be eternally grateful," Waite said in a Facebook post. "It felt like a miracle."

Not everyone who is born with Douthwaite disease undergoes a transplant. Only those with complex defects or weakened hearts due to surgery need one.

Charlie's heart problem was detected during a routine 20-week pregnancy check-up and doctors had open-heart surgery when he was three days old. [19659002] He had cardiac arrest twice after the procedure, although initially he seemed to be recovering well. After a total of 11 operations, the doctors felt that he needed a new heart.

Dr. Zdenka Reinhardt, a cardiologist at Freeman Hospital, told the BBC he was "extremely lucky [to be alive] considering his condition and size."

Charlie was born with a weight of 2.9kg (6lb 5oz) at the Royal Victoria Infirmary in Newcastle. He is expected to be able to leave the hospital in the new year.

Like all other babies who receive a heart transplant, Charlie will have to continue taking medications throughout his life to prevent his body rejecting the organ. [19659002] At this time, there are around 6,500 people on the waiting list for transplants in the United Kingdom. Last year, almost 500 people died while waiting for a transplant.

Due to the lack of available hearts, which must be of the appropriate size and blood type, it is often impossible to perform a heart transplant as soon as required.

There was more NHS- facilitated transplants more than ever last year. However, the waiting list has almost tripled in a decade.

The government is scheduled to begin a consultation on the transfer of England to a system of voluntary exclusion for organ donation, instead of the current acceptance system. This will mean that all are donors unless they explicitly reject the idea.

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