A life-saving liver transplant was conducted recently at Schneider Children's Medical Center in a 3½-year-old child who suffered from a genetic disease in his biliary ducts and needed a transplant to survive.
The operation was conducted by a team in the Organ Transplantation Unit at Schneider Children's led by Dr. Michael Gurewitz, Head of the Liver Transplantation Unit at Schneider Children's, Dr. Sigal Eisner, Head of Kidney Transplants at Schneider Children's and a senior physician in the Organ Transplantation Department at Beilinson Hospital, Dr. Vladimir Tanak, senior physician in the Transplantation Unit and anesthetist, Dr. Eliahu Simchi. Following the surgery, the toddler was transferred to the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit headed by Prof. Elhanan Nahum. Follow-up care is being conducted by Dr. Orit Waisbourd-Zinman, senior physician in the Institute of Gastroenterology, Nutrition and Liver Diseases. The transplantation was coordinated by nurse Michal Shafir.
In order to carry out organ transplants in children, which are especially complex in small children, exceptional preparation is needed by the multidisciplinary teams. These include pediatric transplant surgeons, pediatric anesthetists, ultrasound technicians, gastroenterologists, a transplant coordinator, social workers, dieticians, operating room nurses, intensivists, physicians for follow-up care of recipients in Pediatrics C and more. All are specialists and experienced in the realm of pediatric organ transplantations.
The child's mother thanked the donor's family with emotion, "We do not have words to describe our huge appreciation. We are indebted to the donor's family who in their hour of great sorrow were able to make the decision to save life."
Schneider Children's conducts the majority of organ transplants in children in Israel. Since its inception, over 600 transplants of heart, lungs, liver and kidneys have been performed in infants, children and adolescents at a success rate on a par with leading medical centers in the world.