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Ochsner Medical Center Implants 1st SynCardia Total Artificial Heart in Gulf South Region
Date:5/9/2013

TUCSON, Ariz., May 9, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- When Alfred Williams was admitted to Ochsner Medical Center in December, the 41-year-old father of five had exhausted all treatment options for his enlarged heart. His condition, known as dilated cardiomyopathy, had progressed to end-stage heart failure affecting both sides of his heart. Unable to walk, he had been confined to a bed for months. Hospice care seemed like the only option Mr. Williams had left… until doctors approached him about becoming Ochsner's first patient to receive the SynCardia temporary Total Artificial Heart.

(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20130509/LA10661)

"This device serves as a bridge to transplant which would buy him the time he needs to rehabilitate while waiting on an organ transplant," said Dr. Hector Ventura , Section Head of Heart Failure and Transplantation at Ochsner Medical Center.

To save Mr. Williams' life, on Feb. 21, the Ochsner medical team, led by Dr. Aditya Bansal, performed the Gulf South Region's first implant of the SynCardia Total Artificial Heart. Within two weeks of the surgery, Mr. Williams was out of bed and walking again. He has since been moved out of the ICU and is taking twice daily walks around the hospital.

"This is a guy who didn't walk for three months before his implantation," said Dr. Bansal. "Now he is walking all over the hospital. It is a feeling of satisfaction and that as a group, we've made a difference – we've changed his life."

An experienced truck driver, Mr. Williams was diagnosed with heart problems after getting a "funny feeling" and having trouble breathing while driv
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SOURCE SynCardia Systems, Inc.
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