Jul 1, 2018

4 Days: 5 Liver and Kidney Transplants for Yonathan, Yuval, Sara, and Ahmed

The organ transplant marathon took place at Schneider Children’s Medical Center

4 Days, 5 Transplants

Within 4 days, 5 children received the gift of life due to organ donation. The unusual marathon of organ transplantations took place at Schneider Children’s. For the first time, 4 liver transplants and one kidney transplant were conducted day after day in 5 children.

The first transplant was conducted in 5-month-old Yonatan from Jerusalem who suffered from a congenital liver defect in the ducts of his gall bladder; his father donated a liver lobe. The second liver transplant was conducted in 7-month-old Yuval from Eshkolot in the Negev. Yuval also suffered from a congenital defect; her mother donated a liver lobe. Two cadaveric liver donations accorded transplants in 8-year-old Abu Riah Sara from Sakhnin and 10-month-old Kfir from Arad. The kidney transplant was conducted in 10-year-old Ahmed from the Bedouin Community, who had been under dialysis treatment in the Nephrology Institute at Schneider.

Schneider Children’s is among the few pediatric hospitals in the world able to conduct a large number of organ transplants within a short space of time. Expert medical team and surgical suite readiness is essential in order to perform 5 complex transplantations, including that of a living related adult donor to a child. Teams are comprised of pediatric transplant surgeons, anesthetists, ultrasound technicians, surgical nurses, intensivists and more.

The operations were performed by the Organ Transplantation Department at Schneider Children’s and included senior transplant surgeons Dr. Michael Gurevich and Dr. Sigal Eisner and head of the Surgical Suite and Anesthesia Department Dr. Yaacov Katz, and anesthetists Dr. Eli Simchi, Dr. Mila Katchko and Dr. Igor Tzunzer. The children were transferred for post-surgical care to the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit headed by Dr. Elhanan Nahum, after which they were moved Pediatrics C headed by Dr. Irit Krause. The liver recipients were attended by Dr. Yael Moser-Glazberg senior gastroenterologist in the Institute of Gastroenterology, Nutrition and Liver Diseases headed by Prof. Raanan Shamir. Follow-up care of the kidney recipient was conducted in the Institute of Nephrology, headed by Prof. Miriam Davidovits. The liver transplants were coordinated by nurse Michal Shafir, and the kidney transplant was coordinated by nurse Naomi Zanhandler.

Schneider Children’s conducts the majority of organ transplantations in children in Israel. Since its inception, more than 600 transplantations of heart, lung, liver and kidneys have been performed in children with success on a par with leading pediatric institutions in the world.