An 8-month-old identical twin that got a lifesaving heart transplant left the hospital Saturday six weeks after the surgery, the hospital officials said.
Less than a month back, two families were in grief, one having lost their infant son, and the other over their gravely ill baby. Then in an act of kindness and with the help of modern medicine, the child has a new lease of life.
The parents of twins Nick & Nate were devastated when they heard that babies were born suffering from a disease of the heart called dilated cardiomyopathy, where the heart muscles are not strong enough to pump blood efficiently. Both needed heart transplants to survive. The twins were transferred from Arizona to Los Angeles, where doctors at UCLA Mattel Children's Hospital determined that Nick's case was more severe than his brother's and that he would need the first heart available for transplant.
Nick then received the heart from 4-month old Jordan York, a baby from Florida who suffocated under a pillow at his grandfather's house. Jordan's heart was flown to Los Angeles on a special jet while Nick and his family prepared for his surgery. After a successful five-hour operation on Feb. 16, Nick's transplanted heart needed the assistance of a heart and lung machine for a few days, the body initially had difficulty in accepting the transplant but three days later the body accepted it, making the transplant a success. Dr. Juan Alejos, medical director of the hospital's paediatric heart transplant program feels that, Nick has really made some significant progress, saying that he now responds well to mom and dad and they anticipate that he will get better even more quickly at home.
There are approximately 89,000 Americans currently waiting for a donated organ, and the Drapers hope their story will raise public awareness for the need for organ donors.