David Bennett, a 57-year-old man who had terminal heart disease has died two months after he received a genetically-modified pig’s heart in a groundbreaking transplant.
Recall that surgeons at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) performed the transplant on Bennett in January.
Unfortunately, on Tuesday, the hospital announced that David Bennett has passed on, and that the exact cause of death is yet to be be established.
Further reports say doctors said his condition had been deteriorating for several days.
However, David Jr, Bennett’s son, was full of praises for the hospital for attempting the surgery to save his father’s life.
David believes it would contribute to efforts aimed at addressing a shortage of transplant organs.
Prior to now, the organ transplant was reportedly the only available option for Bennett who was said to be suffering from a life-threatening arrhythmia.
He was said to be hospitalised, bed-ridden for several months and connected to a heart-lung bypass machine to remain alive.
“It was either die or do this transplant. I want to live. I know it’s a shot in the dark, but it’s my last choice. I look forward to getting out of bed after I recover,” Bennett said before the surgery.
Commenting on the surgery, Bartley Griffith, director of the cardiac transplant programme at the medical centre, who performed the operation, said the “breakthrough surgery brings us one step closer to solving the organ shortage crisis.”
In his words: “There are simply not enough donor human hearts available to meet the long list of potential recipients.”