Vietnamese doctors successfully perform first heart-kidney transplant

25/02/2023 10:35

Transplanting both organs at the same time is a big challenge, requiring doctors to be well prepared.

Doctors of the Vietnam-Germany Friendship Hospital perform the transplant on February 15 (Photo: VNA)

The first heart and kidney transplant on one patient in Vietnam was successfully performed on February 15 by doctors of the Vietnam-Germany Friendship Hospital, the hospital announced on February 24.

The transplanted organs were taken from a brain-dead donor.

Associate Professor Nguyen Huu Uoc, director of the hospital’s Cardiovascular and Thoracic Centre, said the patient who received the organs is a 37-year-old man living in the Central Highlands province of Gia Lai. He suffered from dilated cardiomyopathy, heart failure and severe arrhythmias, leading to end-stage renal failure.

He underwent hemodialysis continuously for five to six years and often received emergency treatment at major cardiovascular centres in Ho Chi Minh city and Thua Thien-Hue province.

Due to ineffective treatment, he was instructed by doctors to have a heart and kidney transplant.

In mid-2022, he was introduced to the Vietnam-Germany Friendship Hospital. After careful evaluation, the hospital's experts agreed to perform a simultaneous heart and kidney transplant for the patient with donated organs from a brain-dead donor.

Transplanting both organs at the same time is a big challenge, requiring doctors to be well prepared, Uoc said.

In six months since the transplantation decision was made, no donated brain-dead organ truly matched, and the patient had to continue to visit hospitals for heart and kidney treatment.

In early February 2023, one woman who had a brain death due to a severe traumatic brain injury after a traffic accident donated multiple organs with family consensus.

The transplant surgery lasted for 10 hours from 9am to 7pm on February 15 with the participation of doctors from five centres and clinical departments.

It took the team three hours to take out the organs, five hours to transplant the heart and two hours to transplant the kidney.

“The transplantation was performed successfully thanks to skillful cooperation between heart, kidney transplant and anaesthesia resuscitation technicians as well as careful preparation of medical facilities and advanced equipment,” said Professor Tran Binh Giang, the hospital’s director.

The patient’s heart and kidney recovered fully on February 24, eight days after the transplant.

He can sit up, eat and communicate without special assistance.

He will undergo further post-transplant treatment in the next few weeks.

This was the first time Vietnamese doctors have successfully performed a transplant of heart and kidney organs on one patient.

Vietnamese doctors have performed two organ transplants on one patient three times.

Two years ago, the Vietnam-Germany Hospital doctors conducted a liver and kidney transplant on a patient.


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Vietnamese doctors successfully perform first heart-kidney transplant