Heart Transplant from Top Hospitals and Best Cardiac Specialists in India

Heart Transplant

Heart Transplant SurgeryA heart transplant is surgery to remove a person’s diseased heart and replace it with a healthy heart from a deceased donor. Most heart transplants are done on patients who have end-stage heart failure.

Heart failure is a condition in which the heart is damaged or weak. As a result, it can’t pump enough blood to meet the body’s needs. “End-stage” means the condition is so severe that all treatments, other than a heart transplant, have failed.

Heart Transplant Surgery-Procedure

The pre-operative procedure for the heart transplant surgery includes:

  • Evaluation of donor’s heart and approve it fit for transplantation in the recipient’s body.
  • Extraction of donor’s heart; the donor’s heart is injected with KCL so that the heart rate drops. An extracted heart is kept under ice and is fit for transplantation up to 4-6 hrs of extraction.
  • The recipient is screened with all the necessary diagnostic tests and is kept on immunosuppressive drugs to reduce the risk of rejection of the heart.

The heart transplant procedure requires about 4-6 hour and is done under general anesthesia. The surgeon makes an incision on the sternum and approaches the heart of the patient, during this procedure patient is kept on a heart lung bypass machine to maintain the circulation inside the body. The surgeon then, dissect the great vessels and left atrium to transact the patient’s heart. Now the donor’s heart is placed and the great vessels are sutured to it, once the heart is transplanted and is functional, the patient is weaned of the bypass machine and blood circulation is restored in the patient’s body.

Candidacy for Heart Transplants

Heart transplant candidates are those who’ve experienced heart disease or heart failure due to a variety of causes, including:

  • A congenital defect
  • Coronary artery disease
  • A valve dysfunction or disease
  • A weakened heart muscle, or cardiomyopathy

Even if you have one of these conditions, there are still more factors that are used to determine your candidacy, such as the following:

  • Your age will be considered. Most prospective heart recipients must be under 65 years old.
  • Your overall health will be considered. Multiple organ failure, cancer, or other serious medical conditions may take you off a transplant list
  • Your attitude will be considered. You must commit to changing your lifestyle. This includes exercising, eating healthy, and quitting smoking if you smoke.

If you’re determined to be an ideal candidate for a heart transplant, you’ll be put on a waiting list until a donor heart that matches your blood and tissue type is available.

Ventricular Assist Devices (VADs)

LVAD/ VAD Left Ventricular Assist Device or Ventricular Assist Device:

Ventricular Assist Device or Ventricular Assist Device was once considered as a stop gap arrangement or a bridge to transplant in patients for end stage heart failure who were waiting for heart transplant. With advancement in medical technology, the quality of LVAD has improved to such an extent that patients have shown improvement in quality of life to a great extent.

The LVAD is surgically implanted just below the heart. One end is attached to the left ventricle — that’s the lower chamber of the heart that pumps blood out of the lungs and into the body. The other end is attached to the aorta, the body’s main artery. Blood flows from the ventricles into the pump which passively fills up. When the sensors indicate it is full, the blood is ejected out of the device to the aorta.

A tube passes from the device through the skin. This tube, called the driveline, connects the pump to the external controller and power source.

The pump and its connections are implanted during open-heart surgery. A computer controller, a power pack, and a reserve power pack remain outside the body. Some models let a person wear these external units on a belt or harness outside.

The power pack has to be recharged at night.

Benefit of LVAD involves restoration of blood supply to the heart and other vital organs, time to rest for the heart, reduced fatigue and discomfort.

Side effects include infection, internal bleeding, heart failure, kidney failure, stroke, device failure, blood clot and respiratory failure.

Ventricular Assist Devices (VADs) are implantable mechanical heart pumps. They have been used in recent times to sustain patients who are candidates for heart transplant as they await a donor heart and are increasingly being used as a substitute for transplantation. Emerging research shows that VAD patients find that their hearts actually improve with help from these mechanical pumps.

Best Hospitals in India for Heart Transplant Surgery

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