THE MAGIC OF TRANS­PLANT SURGERY

Central and North Burnett Times - - READ -

Queens­land Liver Trans­plant Ser­vice di­rec­tor Jonathan Fawcett is one of Aus­tralia’s leading trans­plant sur­geons. Prof Fawcett (pic­tured left) said the com­plex­ity of trans­plant surg­eries “var­ied be­tween or­gans”. “The key com­po­nents of a suc­cess­ful trans­plant are the preser­va­tion of the or­gans,” the 58-year-old said. “It’s up to the sur­gi­cal team to re­trieve the or­gans with­out dam­ag­ing them and to prop­erly pre­serve them with the preser­va­tive solutions and to cool them down. “If you do that right it’s a very good start.” Prof Fawcett said sur­geons were acutely aware of each donor’s sacri­fice and this meant the med­i­cal teams were de­ter­mined to save as many lives as pos­si­ble. “For ex­am­ple, we will split the very best livers into two and try to put the left into a child and the right one we will put into an adult,” he said. Prof Fawcett said livers gen­er­ally lasted longer than other trans­planted or­gans. “There are many donor livers that have been go­ing for more than 20 years in Aus­tralia,” he said. The pa­tient’s sur­vival dur­ing and af­ter surgery was his big­gest con­cern, Prof Fawcett said. “You start by get­ting all the tech­ni­cal as­pects of the surgery per­fect, like mak­ing sure all of the bleed­ing has stopped, and then you mon­i­tor the pa­tient very closely,” he said. “You also have to give the right anti-re­jec­tion drugs and the right drugs to make sure you don’t get in­fec­tions.”

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