Chief-CTVS, Max Delhi & NCR Hospital
A heart transplant gives a patient with congenital heart disease the opportunity to have a normal heart with normal blood circulation. If the transplant goes well, heart function and blood flow will be better than ever.
A heart transplant replaces the patient's heart with a donor heart. Doctors remove the patient's heart by transecting the aorta, the main pulmonary artery and the superior and inferior vena cavae, and dividing the left atrium, leaving the back wall of the left atrium with the pulmonary vein openings in place. The surgeon connects the donor heart by sewing together the recipient and donor vena cavae, aorta, pulmonary artery and left atrium. In patients with congenital heart disease, the surgeon may simultaneous transplant the lungs and the heart.
You may require a heart transplant for several reasons. The most common reason is that one or both ventricles have aren't functioning properly and severe heart failure is present. Ventricular failure can happen in many forms of congenital heart disease, but is more common in congenital defects with a single ventricle or if long-standing valve obstruction or leakage has led to irreversible heart failure.
The donor heart is matched to the recipient by blood type and body size. As the heart transplant recipient, you must take medications to prevent his or her immune system from rejecting the new heart. These drugs are called immunosuppressive medication. Your medical team will balance the amount of immunosuppressive medication you need to prevent rejection of your new heart with the risk of side effects, which include infection or cancer. What will I need in the future?
After your heart transplant, your cardiac team will monitor you closely for heart rejection, which can happen in the heart muscle cells or in the heart's arteries. They will also watch for side effects of the immunosuppressive medications, which include diabetes, infection, kidney disease, cancer or high blood pressure. If any of these problems arise, we will change the medication type or dose. We may also decide to change your immunosuppressive medications as new drugs become available.
You will require regular checkups after your transplant. At these visits, we will do blood tests to check the levels of your immunosuppressive drugs and look for side effects. He or she may also order electrocardiogram, echocardiogram and Holter monitoring to help monitor your heart rhythm and function, or an endo-myocardial biopsy, which is a diagnostic procedure that surveys the sufficiency of your immunosuppressive therapy. we will evaluate your coronary arteries yearly or every other year to monitor for signs of narrowed coronary arteries in your transplanted heart. You should also have routine medical checkups to maintain overall health.