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A 29-year-old IT professional who is a patient of dilated cardiomyopathy — in which the heart is enlarged and cannot pump blood efficiently — and a condition which caused the death of his younger sister, on Thursday received a new heart from a 35-year-old man who died in a road accident in Nashik. The heart transplant — the seventh in the city — was performed by a team of cardiac surgeons at Ruby Hall Clinic including Dr Ashish Khanijo and Dr Kaushik Seth. The team went to Nashik late on Wednesday night after Aarti Gokhale, chief at Zonal Transplant Coordination Centre, Pune, alerted hospital authorities about the availability of a heart.
“On Wednesday night, ZTCC had to register the deaths of two people — one a 35-year-old man from Nashik and another a 23-year-old student from Pune. Both were declared brain stem deaths on Wednesday evening and the families agreed to donate their organs. We had to immediately contact several hospitals for donating organs including heart, liver and kidneys,” said Gokhale. Surekha Joshi, social medical officer at Ruby Hall Clinic, said that the 29-year-old woman recipient was under Dr Jagdish Hiremath and Dr C N Makale’s treatment at Ruby Hall Clinic. She had a pacemaker fitted last year but her condition had deteriorated. She was unable to attend work and had been placed on the waiting list for one and-a-half months for a heart transplant.
Gokhale said that the heart was retrieved by the team of surgeons and flown to Pune. According to Ashok Morale, Deputy Commissioner of Police (Traffic), two green corridors were set up for the organ transplant. The heart was flown from Nashik at 11.09 am and reached Pune airport at 12.08 pm. The distance of 7.6 km from Pune airport to Ruby Hall Clinic was covered in six minutes and 10 seconds — a record. An additional 10 officers and 35 personnel were deployed.
In the other corridor two organs were brought by road from Nashik to Sahyadri Hospital here and the distance, covered usually in six hours, was covered in two hours and 49 minutes. The liver from the 35-year-old man was transplanted in a 46-year-old patient with end stage liver disease at Sahyadri Hospital. Dr Bipin Vibhute, liver transplant surgeon, said, “As soon as we were informed about the donor in Nashik the team visited the hospital to harvest the liver. While the heart of the 23-year-old student could not be used due to a medical condition, the liver and kidneys were sent to Deenanath Mangeshkar hospital and Ruby Hall Clinic.”
According to Gokhale, from January till date a total of 31 donors were registered and while two hearts were shared with Mumbai ZTCC, Pune saw seven heart transplants. A total of 46 kidneys were donated and 30 livers.