Mar 25

I didn’t know he had a heart.

Dick Cheney Recovering From Heart Transplant Surgery (ABC News, Mar 24, 2012):

Mitt Romney tweeted, “Ann and I send our thoughts and prayers to Vice President Cheney for a fast and full recovery.”

Dick Cheney receives heart transplant: aide (The Raw Story, Mar 24, 2012):

Former Vice President Dick Cheney received a heart transplant Saturday afternoon at a Virginia hospital, according to the Associated Press.

Cheney, who suffered his fifth heart attack in 2010, did not know the identity of the heart donor after waiting 20 months for the operation, as told to the AP by his aide Kara Ahern. Continue reading »

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Oct 22

GM pigs could provide human organs ‘by 2013’ (Telegraph, Oct. 21, 2011):

Organs grown in genetically modified pigs could be transplanted into humans in as little as two years’ time, scientists believe.

A persistent shortage of human organs has led experts to investigate methods of using pigs created with human genes, so that body parts grown in them can be harvested for use in patients without their immune systems rejecting them.

Now scientists say that a trial transplanting pigs’ corneas into humans with eye problems could begin by 2013.

Writing in today’s edition of The Lancet, the Pittsburgh University team predict: “With new genetically modified pigs becoming available that are likely to improve the outcome of cellular and corneal xenotransplantation further, we believe that clinical trials will be justified within the next two to three years.”

Transplantation of larger organs, such as lungs, hearts and kidneys, is likely to take longer, due to problems with clots forming as well as too much bleeding, animal studies show.

Continue reading »

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Sep 27

Transplant tourism: Jobless Spaniards sell kidneys


British victims of the credit crunch are offering to sell their kidneys for £25,000 or more to help pay debts, an investigation by The Sunday Times has revealed.

At least a dozen adverts have appeared on the internet offering kidneys for sale from British “donors”. Five of the sellers corresponded with undercover journalists, who posed as friends and relatives of sick patients to negotiate sales.

One person willing to sell a kidney is a 26-year-old mental health nurse who said he needed the money to pay debts after a business he set up went bankrupt. Another is a 43-year-old taxi driver from Lancashire, who wants to raise cash to pay off some of his mortgage and buy a new kitchen.

Both men said they wanted to help those in need of kidney transplants at the same time as relieving their financial difficulties. A leading doctor said the phenomenon highlighted the need for a public discussion of the issue of selling organs.

Continue reading »

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Sep 05

Cass Sunstein speaking at Harvard Law School. (Photo: Matthew W. Hutchins, Harvard Law Record.)

( – Cass Sunstein, President Barack Obama’s nominee to head the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA), has advocated a policy under which the government would “presume” someone has consented to having his or her organs removed for transplantation into someone else when they die unless that person has explicitly indicated that his or her organs should not be taken.

Under such a policy, hospitals would harvest organs from people who never gave permission for this to be done.

Outlined in the 2008 book “Nudge: Improving Decisions About Health, Wealth, and Happiness,” Sunstein and co-author Richard H. Thaler argued that the main reason that more people do not donate their organs is because they are required to choose donation.

Sunstein and Thaler pointed out that doctors often must ask the deceased’s family members whether or not their dead relative would have wanted to donate his organs. These family members usually err on the side of caution and refuse to donate their loved one’s organs.

Continue reading »

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Sep 05

September 03, 2009

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May 10

A MACABRE traffic associated with poor countries in Asia and Latin America has sprung up for the first time in western Europe as the credit crunch reduces Spaniards to selling organs to “transplant tourists”.

Spanish “kidney for sale” advertisements have proliferated recently on the internet as people struggle to make ends meet in a country whose 17% unemployment rate is the highest in Europe.

Sergio, a 42-year-old welder and father of four, said he had received an offer of £20,000 from a German couple who needed his kidney for their five-year-old son. If tests showed them to be compatible, an operation would be performed in a “third country” since such transactions are illegal in Europe.

“Apparently, there’s a waiting list of at least five years for a kidney in Germany,” he told a television programme, “but in five years the kid will be dead.”

Just to advertise a human organ for sale is illegal in Spain and other sellers sounded nervous when contacted last week on the telephone by The Sunday Times.

Continue reading »

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Dec 18

Dr. Maria Siemionow, center, led a Cleveland Clinic team including Dr. Risal Djohan, left, and Dr. Daniel Alam in an operation replacing most of a patient’s face. Cleveland Clinic, via Associated Press

CLEVELAND – Only the forehead, upper eyelids, lower lip, lower teeth and jaw are hers.

The rest of her face comes from a cadaver.

In a 23-hour operation, transplant surgeons have given nearly an entire new face to a woman with facial damage so severe that she could not eat on her own or breathe without a hole in her windpipe, doctors at the Cleveland Clinic said here on Wednesday.

The highly experimental procedure, performed within the last two weeks, was the world’s fourth partial face transplant, the country’s first, and the most extensive and complicated such operation to date. Dr. Maria Siemionow led the surgical team, which took turns at the operating table so the doctors could rest, sleep and share expertise.

Continue reading »

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Nov 19

Claudia Castillo, the patient in the ground-breaking operation. Photo: AP

PARIS — Physicians at four European universities have completed what they say is the first successful transplant of a human windpipe using a patient’s own stem cells to fashion an organ and prevent its rejection by her immune system, according to an article in the British medical journal The Lancet. One of the physicians said the surgery could herald a “new age in surgical care.”

The transplant operation was performed on the patient, Claudia Castillo, in June in Barcelona, Spain, to alleviate an acute shortage of breath caused by a failing airway following severe tuberculosis. It followed weeks of preparation carried out at the universities of Barcelona, Spain, Bristol, England and Padua and Milan in Italy.

Continue reading »

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Sep 23

(NaturalNews) Indian police have raided a clinic where a team of doctors ran an illegal kidney-trading ring – removing kidneys from the poor, often by force, in order to sell them to wealthy locals or foreigners.

“We suspect around 400 or 500 kidney transplants were done by these doctors over the last nine years,” said Mohinder Lal, the police commissioner of Gurgaon, where the clinic was located.

Lal said that four doctors, five nurses, 20 paramedics, 10 pathology clinics, five diagnostic centers and three private hospitals were involved in removing and transplanting the kidneys and covertly caring for many of the donors afterward.

Continue reading »

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Jun 19

(NaturalNews) British Prime Minister Gordon Brown has announced his support for the harvesting of organs from dead patients without prior consent, and said that he hopes for such a policy change to take place within the year.

“A system of this kind seems to have the potential to close the aching gap between the potential benefits of transplant surgery in the United Kingdom and the limits imposed by our current system of consent,” Brown wrote in the Sunday Telegraph.

With a waiting list for organs 8,000 patients long, and 1,000 people dying each year due to organ unavailability, the U.K. has announced plans to overhaul its organ donation system. As part of this new effort, doctors and nurses will be pressured to identify more organ donors ahead of time and to alert organ donation coordinators as patients approach death. The government seeks to appoint a doctor in each hospital as a donation “champion,” to be paired with a lay person who can do outreach on the topic.

The government admits that a conflict of interest might occur when doctors are encouraged to view still-living patients as potential organ sources.

Continue reading »

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Jun 13

Doctors were about to remove the man’s organs for transplant when his heart began to beat!

France may have to reconsider its medical definition of death after a heart-attack victim came alive in the operating theatre as doctors were about to remove his organs for transplant.

The patient, whose identity has not been revealed, recovered after a long period in intensive care and is now able to walk and talk.

The 45-year-old man owes his life to the fact that surgeons authorised to remove organs for transplant operations were not immediately available. Under experimental rules adopted in France last year, to make more organ transplants possible, the man had already reached the point where he could be officially regarded as dead. Similar rules – allowing the removal of organs when a patient’s heart has stopped and fails to respond to prolonged massage – already apply in several other European countries, including Britain. Continue reading »

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Jun 07

Saving the living has always been the No. 1 priority for a New York City ambulance crew. But a select group of paramedics may soon have a different task altogether: saving the dead. The city is considering creating a special ambulance whose crew would rush to collect the newly deceased and preserve the body so that the organs might be taken for transplant.

The “rapid-organ-recovery ambulance,” still in the early planning stages, could raise a host of ethical questions and strike some families as ghoulish. But top medical officials in the Fire Department and Bellevue Hospital say it has the potential to save hundreds of lives.

Generally in the U.S., only people who die at hospitals are used as organ donors, because doctors are on hand with life-support machinery and other equipment to preserve the organs and remove them before they spoil. Surgeons have only a few critical hours before kidneys, livers and other body parts suffer damage that renders them unusable.

(When I read this article I had a lot of second thoughts what this might be all about. – The Infinite Unknown)

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Apr 04

Doctors in Taiwan say a 60-year-old man survived 16 days without a heart while awaiting transplant surgery. Continue reading »

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