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Methodist Dallas Medical Center First in Metroplex to Perform Kidney Transplant on HIV Positive Patient
Date:11/16/2009

DALLAS, Nov. 16 /PRNewswire/ -- Methodist Dallas Medical Center recently made history when it became the first in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex to perform a kidney transplant on an HIV positive patient. The patient, a 40-year old African American male, is healthy, well, and enjoying a life free from dialysis for the first time in six years. The surgery was performed by Dr. Richard Dickerman, with transplant surgeons Dr. Jose Castillo-Lugo, Dr. David Nessar, and Dr. Freda Levy. Dr. Nicholas Bellos was the infectious disease specialist managing the HIV disease and related post-transplant care. "The transplant performed on this HIV patient represents Methodist's total commitment to the transplant effort including liver and pancreas," says Dr. Dickerman. "It requires effort from surgeons, staff, nephrologists and infectious disease specialists to take on a difficult patient population." He adds this effort began as an idea of the late Dr. Karl Brinker, former medical director of transplant services at Methodist, and was brought to fruition under the leadership of Dr. Castillo and Dr. Bellos.

"The main concerns with transplanting HIV patients have to do with drug interactions between the HIV medications and the transplant drugs which have to be managed carefully to prevent rejection and/or toxicities," says Dr. Bellos, MD FIDSA, FACP, an infectious disease specialist on the medical staff at Methodist Health System, adding that Methodist had been working on the protocol for several years. "The benefit for the HIV transplant patient is they can be transplanted and treated locally, rather than having to undergo the transplant in a different location and return to Dallas for follow-up care." Dr. Bellos adds that Methodist has an excellent transplant program for non-HIV impacted patients with a very good success rate.

For the patient, who learned he was HIV positive in 2003, his hope was restored when he received the transplant he thought
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SOURCE Methodist Health System
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