Teen with Total Artificial Heart Bridged to Transplant at Texas Children’s Hospital
TUCSON, Ariz., Feb. 9, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — SynCardia Systems, Inc. (www.syncardia.com), manufacturer of the world’s first and only FDA, Health Canada and CE (Europe) approved Total Artificial Heart, announced today that 18-year-old Jordan Merecka was successfully bridged to a heart transplant at Texas Children’s Hospital after 160 days of support with the SynCardia temporary Total Artificial Heart.
“Before I got the Total Artificial Heart, I had a lot of chest pain. I could only walk about 100 yards before I was out of breath and had to stop because I couldn’t go any farther,” said Jordan. “With the Total Artificial Heart, I could walk again, go outside, and I had no more chest pain. I almost felt back to my old self. Now that I have my new donor heart, it’s just getting back to a normal life step by step.”
Just two days after his Oct. 29th transplant, for Halloween, Jordan masqueraded as his surgeon, Dr. David L.S. Morales. “Jordan was a little more than 24 hours out of a 12-hour surgery and he’s the one cracking jokes,” said Dr. Morales.
Jordan made headlines in August 2011 when he became the first teen in the U.S. to be discharged from the hospital using the Freedom® portable driver to power his Total Artificial Heart. Weighing 13.5 pounds, the Freedom driver is the world’s first wearable power supply for the SynCardia Total Artificial Heart. The Freedom driver is CE approved for use in Europe and undergoing an FDA-approved Investigational Device Exemption (IDE) clinical study in the U.S.
“It was a really good feeling getting to go home again,” said Jordan. “I’d go on little walks and go fishing with my friends. My sisters and my brother were really happy that I was back and that Mom and Dad were home so they weren’t alone all the time.”
Jordan was born with multiple congenital heart defects, including a “reversed” heart (dextrocardia) and his heart vessels backwards (corrected transposition of the great arteries). While awaiting a transplant, he was admitted to the hospital in April 2011 suffering from end-stage biventricular heart failure. The following month, his vital organs began to fail and he was placed on a ventilator. To save Jordan’s life, on May 22, 2011, his doctors performed Texas Children’s first implant of the Total Artificial Heart.
Video: ABC Houston – Teen learning to live with new heart transplant
CAUTION – The Freedom® portable driver is an investigational device, limited by United States law to investigational use.
About the SynCardia temporary Total Artificial Heart
SynCardia Systems, Inc. (Tucson, AZ) is the privately-held manufacturer of the world’s first and only FDA, Health Canada and CE approved Total Artificial Heart. Originally used as a permanent replacement heart, SynCardia’s Total Artificial Heart is currently approved as a bridge to transplant for people dying from end-stage biventricular heart failure. There have been more than 950 implants of the Total Artificial Heart, accounting for more than 230 patient years of life.
Similar to a heart transplant, SynCardia’s Total Artificial Heart replaces both failing heart ventricles and the four heart valves, eliminating the symptoms and source of end-stage biventricular failure. Unlike a donor heart, the Total Artificial Heart is immediately available at SynCardia Certified Centers and does not require expensive anti-rejection medication, which can cause subsequent complications. It is the only device that provides immediate, safe blood flow of up to 9.5 liters per minute through both ventricles. This high volume of safe blood flow helps speed the recovery of vital organs, helping make the patient a better transplant candidate.
SynCardia Ranked #20 Among World’s 50 Most Innovative Companies
In March 2011, Fast Company magazine ranked SynCardia #20 in its annual list of the “World’s 50 Most Innovative Companies” for “giving mobility to artificial heart recipients.” Weighing 13.5 pounds, SynCardia’s Freedom® portable driver is the world’s first wearable driver designed to power the Total Artificial Heart both inside and outside the hospital. The Freedom driver is CE approved for use in Europe and undergoing an FDA-approved Investigational Device Exemption (IDE) clinical study in the U.S.
SOURCE SynCardia Systems, Inc.