Heart transplant surgery has helped save the lives of several individuals over the last four decades, and there is no dearth of statistical data to validate the efficiency of this procedure.
Prolonged heart diseases and infections have the tendency to cause irreversible damage to the human heart, such that the person may not have any other option, but to opt for a heart transplant. Simply put, the heart transplant surgery is a process wherein a heart, which have been damaged irreversibly, is replaced with a healthy heart, donated by a dead person.
Heart Transplant Facts and Statistics – Global Perspective
The first successful heart transplant was carried out by a South African cardiac surgeon, Christiaan Barnard on December 3, 1967. Since then, heart transplant or cardiac transplant surgery has come a long way to become one of the most important medical procedures in the world, saving the lives of thousands of individuals. More of such facts about the procedure are discussed below.
- Approximately 800,000 people in the world have a Class IV heart defect, which makes it necessary for them to opt for a new organ.
- On an average, around 3,500 heart transplant surgeries are performed worldwide every year.
- Statistics reveal that 162 transplants were carried out in Canada in 2008, of which 62 were performed in Ontario and 46 in Quebec.
- The number of people who pledged to donate their heart after their death reached 16,124,871 mark in the United Kingdom alone in March 2009.
- The longest living heart transplant recipient in the world was Tony Huesman, who lived for a period of 31 years after the surgery.
Heart Transplant in the United States
Did you know that the heart transplant surgery is the third most popular organ transplant surgery in the United States? The only two organ transplants which precede it are kidney and liver transplant. Given below are more of such interesting facts.
- According to the American Heart Association the number of heart transplants performed in the United States in 2008 was 2,163. In the previous year, i.e., in 2007, the number was slightly higher at 2,210.
- Statistics reveal that 72.4 percent of the patients in the country are males, while the remaining 27.6 are females.
- These stats also reveal that the 54.2 percent of the patients in the U.S. belong to the age group of 50 years and above, while 19.4 percent belong to age group of 35 – 49.
- The breakup of heart transplant life expectancy in the U.S. as of 2009.
- 1-year survival rate: 88.0 percent (males) and 77.2 percent (females).
- 3-year survival rate: 79.3 percent (males) and 77.2 percent (females).
- 5-year survival rate: 73.1 percent (males) and 67.4 percent (females).
- A 2008 study facilitated by the U.S. federal government revealed that heart transplants, even after fulfilling the criteria, are more effective in case of same-sex transplants, i.e., male to male or female to female, as opposed to male to female and vice versa.
On an average, the procedure costs anywhere between $750,000 – $800,000. Over the course of time, we have done significant progress in the field of medicine. Procedures like xenotransplantation and artificial heart transplant promise a better future for heart patients today. Even though there do exist some complications which are associated with these procedures, the survival rates do promise a relatively better future for people suffering from various heart diseases and infections.