"You're scared, but at the same time that's what God wanted and I felt it was the right thing to do," he says.
O'Hara received his SynCardia Total Artificial Heart on June 26, 2013. The SynCardia Heart pumps up to 9.5 liters of safe blood flow through each of the device's two ventricles per minute—more than what the average human heart can pump.
"Right after the Total Artificial Heart implant, his fingernails had color," recalls his daughter Kelly Miller. "The biggest change was the sound of his voice. Before the implant, it didn't have the energy that it has now."
The Total Artificial Heart also helps normalize the pressure of the blood returning to the heart (central venous pressure), which helps vital organs such as kidneys and the liver recover. This was the case with O'Hara.
O'Hara became the first Indiana resident to be discharged from the hospital without a human heart, thanks to the Freedom®portable driver, which powers the SynCardia Heart. O'Hara carried his 13.5-pound Freedom driver in a backpack. After 129 days of hospitalization, O'Hara was discharged to wait at home for his donor heart.
Back home, O'Hara spent time with his family, went fishing and danced at a Methodist Health Foundation banquet. The foundation helped pay for his medical expenses.
O'Hara received a donor heart transplant on November 27, 2013. Since his hospital discharge on December 23, he's lived with his father—his mother died in November unrelated to IHSS—on 2.5 acres "with a cow, two goats and five chickens," he says.
He puts his new-found energy to constant use. He works on Model T Fords and is remodeling the kitchen, along with doing daily work arou
|SOURCE SynCardia Systems, Inc.|
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