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A Heart for Jordan Merecka: Texas Children's Hospital's First Total Artificial Heart Patient Receives the Gift of a Donor Heart
Date:11/1/2011

me he needed to get a well matched donor heart. I look forward to seeing Jordan return to life as a normal teenager."

Texas Children's Hospital worked hand-in-hand with LifeGift, an organ procurement organization, to recover Jordan's heart. Jordan's donor not only saved his life, but the lives of several others through the donation of double lungs, liver, two kidneys and a pancreas.

Jordan's story
Jordan was born with multiple congenital heart defects, including dextrocardia, or a "reversed" heart. As a child, he experienced two open chest surgeries. Later, he received several surgical revisions and an implantable defibrillator. But, in September 2010, Jordan's heart began to fail and he was placed on a waiting list for a heart transplant. With medical treatment, he was able to attend school as he waited. In April 2011, his health took a turn for the worse and he was admitted to Texas Children's Hospital with heart failure symptoms and kidney insufficiency. He was in critical need of a heart transplant. Weeks passed as he waited for a donor heart and made multiple visits to the cardiovascular intensive care unit. Over the weekend of May 21, all of his organs began to fail acutely and he could not breathe on his own since his heart was so weak.  

On May 22, Jordan underwent a history-making heart surgery at Texas Children's Heart Center, where his native heart was removed and replaced by the Total Artificial Heart. The heart, pneumatically driven by precisely calibrated pulses of air and vacuum, is approved as a bridge to transplant for patients suffering from end-stage heart failure affecting both sides of the heart (biventricular failure) who might die before a donor heart becomes available.

Jordan participated in the FDA-approved Investigational Device Exemption (IDE) clinical study of the Freedom portable driver. Wearing the Freedom driver in a backpack, Jordan had mobility to leave the hospital and return to h
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SOURCE Texas Children's Hospital
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