World's First Pediatric Hospital to Implant Total Artificial Heart: Jordan's Story





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Uploaded on Aug 30, 2011

Jordan Merecka, 17, was born with multiple congenital heart defects, including dextrocardia, or a “reversed” heart. As a child, he received two open chest surgeries, several surgical revisions, and an implantable defibrillator. In April 2011, his health took a turn for the worse, and he was in critical need of a heart transplant. Over the weekend of May 21, all of his organs began to fail acutely and he could not breathe on his own since his heart was so weak.

On May 22 2011, Jordan underwent a history-making heart surgery at Texas Children’s Heart Center, where his native heart was removed and replaced by the Total Artificial Heart, which serve as a bridge to donor-heart transplantation. Texas Children’s Hospital became the first pediatric hospital in the world to implant the SynCardia temporary Total Artificial Heart into the chest of a teen.

After spending three months tethered to a 418-pound machine called “Big Blue” that powered his Total Artificial Heart while he was in the hospital, Jordan was able to leave the hospital and go home wearing the Freedom® portable driver. This battery-operated, 13.5-lb portable power supply allowed him to return to his home and move around freely while he awaited a donor heart.

As opposed to waiting in the hospital for his donor heart, the Total Artificial Heart allowed Jordan the luxury of being at home with his friends and family; the chance to rehabilitate and become stronger in preparation for his heart transplant, and most importantly, the time he needed to get a well matched donor heart.

Learn more about the Hear Failure Program at Texas Children's Hospital

Learn more about the Congenital Heart Surgery Service at Texas Children's Hospital

Learn more about the Heart Transplant Program at Texas Children's Hospital

Learn more about Texas Children's Heart Center

Update to Jordan’s Condition:

Good news! On Saturday, Oct. 29, 2011, 18-year-old Jordan Merecka received a phone call that changed his life; he learned that he was a good match for a donor heart. After a 12-hour heart transplant surgery at Texas Children's Hospital, Merecka and his family are celebrating his amazing gift of a new life.

Watch the news here for more information: http://youtu.be/54PoAup60-A?t=3m46s


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