Mechanical heart removed after organ heals itself

Mechanical heart removed after organ heals self

Updated Tue. Aug. 28 2007 9:23 PM ET News Staff
A 15-year-old Camrose, Alta. girl has become the first Canadian to be taken off an artificial heart device because her own diseased heart healed itself.
"For sure it's a miracle," said Dr. Holger Buchholz, a heart specialist, on Tuesday about the case of Melissa Mills.
"More than several years ago, we would've considered this next to impossible, that a heart that sick could recover to that degree without going ahead for a transplant," added Dr. Ivan Rebeyka.
"I feel great because I can go hang out with my friends," Mills said. "It's just amazing."
Mills was sent to Edmonton's Stollery Children's Hospital last year after a sudden illness affected her heart and a transplant was urgently needed.
Her parents were told to prepare for the possibility that their daughter might not survive.
Doctors at the hospital implanted a Berlin Heart, a mechanical device worn outside the body that keeps blood pumping in a person with a damaged heart. The Stollery is one of a few facilities in Canada to work with the Berlin Hearts, which are the world's first mechanical hearts designed for children.
With that done, Mills then waited for a heart to become available for a transplant. At one point, she was at the top of the North American transplant list.
But over the next few months, her condition improved dramatically. Her own heart regained strength and after 146 days on the Berlin Heart, Melissa underwent surgery to have the device removed.
Making that decision wasn't easy. Doctors did a weaning trail, turning off the artificial heart of a few minutes and watching how Mills' own heart responded.
"I had to be convinced that her heart is not getting big again, and that her blood pressure is stable," Buchholz said.
Rebeyka, who leads the program at the hospital, says Mills' progress shows they're just starting to understand all the applications of the Berlin Hearts.
"We are thrilled with Melissa's outcome and excited by what this means for future patients," she said.
Melissa's family is overjoyed.
"We thought the miracle was that the Berlin Heart would give us time to find the perfect donor heart for Melissa," said her mother, Sharon Mills. "We are overwhelmed that instead, the Berlin Heart gave her own heart time to rest and repair itself."
Melissa can't take her recovered heart's health for granted. She will have to exercise regularly, follow a heart-healthy diet and a regular sleeping pattern.
She will start Grade 10 next week.
With a report from CTV's Marnie Kuhlmann
I read about that on That is truly miraculous. Makes you wonder how much the human body can heal with a little help?
1, this looks like an advertisement of Berline heart.
2, this girl's heart just wanted a break. You want to have some holidays doesn't mean you want to be fired.
3, I'm so glad her heart only wanted a break.
Ha! I don't think they'll be on sale at Walmart anytime soon!

Canadian Tire perhaps...


Quote: Originally Posted by smilingfishView Post

1, this looks like an advertisement of Berline heart.

I was reading about this in the morning paper,and say it is a miracle that this happened. Miracles are all around us and we seldom know them for what they are
no new posts