UI artificial heart recipient first in Midwest to be discharged - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

UI artificial heart recipient first in Midwest to be discharged

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IOWA CITY (KWWL) -

The first University of Iowa patient to receive an artificial heart, has become the first in the Midwest to be discharged.

Richard Whittington of Geneseo, Illinois went home Tuesday, after receiving the total artificial heart transplant 34 days ago.

The device is the world's first total artificial heart approved by the FDA as a bridge for people dying from end stage heart failure of both ventricles.

The device allows Whittington to wait for a donor heart while at home with his family.

''Rather than allow him to get really , really sick and really dehabilitated, let's put in a device that would preserve everything else and replace your heart so you can get to the point where you can have a transplant,'' said cardiothoracic surgeon Dr James Davis.

''If it wasn't for these people here, I'd probably be dead in a couple months. It's been a trip, I'll tell you that, but a lot of good people that work here and smart," said Whittington.

Doctors will continue to monitor Whittington as he awaits a donor heart.

 

 

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