'World-first' heart-thymus transplant success

A pediatric surgery team at Duke University successfully performed a heart transplant and a thymus tissue transplant from the same donor. By transplanting both, the odds of rejection may be reduced.

US doctors say a young boy called Easton has made medical history by becoming the first person in the world to receive a combined heart and thymus transplant.


Easton was born with a weak heart as well as problems with his immune system. He spent his first seven months in hospital - some of it on life support - and needed numerous heart operations. as well as treatment for recurrent infections that his body was unable to fight on its own.

Since Easton needed a new heart and, independently, a new thymus gland, the FDA granted approval for the procedures that went ahead in August 2021, when Easton was six months old.

The medical team plan to wean Easton off the immunosuppressive drugs at some point, to see how he progresses.

bbc.com, healio.com, kvue.com


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