The parents of Miriam Diab aged 15 months from Kfar Tamra near Nahariya, had just boarded the plane for their return flight to Israel after a holiday abroad when they received the exciting news that they had waited to hear: a liver donation had been found for their little daughter. Miriam was born with a metabolic disease which could have led to cognitive impairment during her life and even mental retardation. A liver transplant was the sole medical solution for her condition.
The donation was made possible by the family of soccer star Makdad Badui, aged 23 from Kfar Kassem, who was tragically killed in a traffic accident. They courageously agreed to donate his organs through the National Transplantation Center. Since the window of opportunity for the conduction of a liver transplant is so narrow, Miriam was brought to the operating room at Schneider Children's by her uncle. Her parents who were under great tension during their flight, arrived directly to the hospital from the airport and saw their daughter immediately after the successful transplant.
Makdad's uncle, Issa Raazi, said that "Makdad's parents made a brave and humanitarian decision of the first degree. In their most difficult hour, they agreed to donate their beloved son's organs because the act would save other people's lives".
Mohammed Diab, Miriam's father, added that "we are deeply grateful to the donor's family, who despite such distressing and tragic reasons, bravely agreed to donate his organs, thus giving life to others. We would like to also thank the amazing team at Schneider Children's who go above and beyond to grant Miriam the best treatment."
The transplant was conducted by Dr. Michael Gurevich, head of the Liver Transplantation Unit and Dr. Sigal Eisner, head of the Kidney Transplant Service, assisted by anesthetist Dr. Yelena Tzeitlin, head of Anesthesiology. Following the operation, Miriam was transferred to the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit headed by Prof. Elhanan Nahum, and thereafter for continued recovery to Pediatrics C headed by Prof. Irit Krause. Pre- and post-operative care will be conducted by a special team from the Liver Transplantation Unit in the Institute of Gastroenterology, Nutrition and Liver Diseases.
Liver transplantation is among the most complex operations especially when performed in small children. The procedure requires special readiness of hospital teams including pediatric organ transplant surgeons, ultrasound technicians, gastroenterologists, anesthetists, surgical staff, intensivists and more.
Schneider Children's conducts the majority of organ transplants in children in Israel. Since its inception, more than 700 organ transplants of heart, lung, liver and kidneys have been performed with a success rate on a par with leading medical centers in the world.