US Man Gets Pig Heart Transplant in Historical Medical Breakthrough

US Man Gets Pig Heart Transplant in Historical Medical Breakthrough

  • A 57-years-old man has become the first in the world to get a pig heart transplanted into him by doctors in the United States
  • David Bennett made history as he battled terminal illness for six weeks which made doctors resort to using genetically modified pig heart for him
  • Doctors said he is doing well after the surgery as the procedure brings an end to years of research on how humans can get genetically modified animal hearts

Life saying procedure

A man from the United States of America has made history as the first person in the world to get a heart transplant from a pig.

The BBC report says that 57-year-old David Bennett is reportedly feeling fine after three days after the experimental transplant which lasted hours, according to doctors.

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David Benneth
David Benneth
Source: UGC

The pig heart transplant was seen as the last resort for Bennett, though doctors did not say if he will survive for long.

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The last chance

Bennett said a day after the operation was done that his case was either do or die. He said it is not trial and error but his last choice.

The US medical authority gave doctors at the University of Maryland a special waiver to carry out the transplant on the grounds that Bennett would have died if that option was not available.

Prior to the procedure, he was seen as not eligible for a human transplant because of his bad health condition.

It is not clear how much Bennett spent on the genetically-edited pig heart transplant but it is estimated that an average heart transplant costs about N581 million. He may have paid more since his was an experimental procedure.

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Watershed for the medical field

The BBC quotes AFP as saying that the pig used in the operation has been genetically changed in order to strike our several genes that would have made it impossible for the organ to be accepted by Bennett's body

Bennett said he wishes that the transplant will let him go on with his life. He was ill for six weeks which led to him to get the operation and a machine was attached to him which kept him alive to after he was diagnosed with heart disease. reports that Terhemen Anongo was a brilliant student who loved Physics and Mathematics. He graduated from secondary school with the best results. His dream was to become a petroleum engineer.

However, his father, Mr Anongo, a Mathematics teacher, had something different planned for him; he wanted him to study medicine and become a medical doctor. This is the genesis of Terhemen's tragic story.

In 1996, when Terhemen got admitted into Nigeria's premier university, the University of Ibadan, to study Medicine, Mr Anongo would probably think his dream for his brilliant son was about to become a reality; he would emerge as one of the country's most successful medical experts.


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