In Time for Father's Day a Rare Surgery for an Even Rarer Condition

Jun 17, 2010, 15:21 ET from Montefiore Medical Center

Dual Heart/Liver Transplant Performed At Montefiore

NEW YORK, June 17 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Juan Farias, left Montefiore Medical Center in time for Father's Day with his four children, and with the present of a new heart and a new liver. Mr. Farias was able to be discharged June 11, 2010 because of the extraordinary work of Montefiore physicians and surgeons over a wide range of medical disciplines.

(Photo: )

(Photo: )

"Mr. Farias was originally referred to Montefiore by his physicians in Orange County for treatment of his coronary artery disease and advanced heart failure," said Robert M. Michler, MD, Surgeon-in-Chief at Montefiore and Co-Director of the Montefiore - Einstein Heart Center.  In discussing his plan of care, Montefiore's heart team decided that Juan's condition was so grave that a heart transplant was his only option. Intense testing also found that his heart disease was caused by a rare enzyme deficiency in his liver that failed to regulate his cholesterol, meaning that his new heart would eventually become diseased again if this was not dealt with. It was determined that a liver transplant would also be necessary to prevent disease reoccurrence.

Mr. Farias, 32, from Middletown, New York, left Montefiore with not one -- but two new leases on life, a remarkable ten days after this rare surgery. In 2009, only eleven heart/liver transplants were performed in the U.S. --none in the New York metropolitan area. He expressed his gratitude to Montefiore's medical professionals for being able to watch his children grow up.

This rare dual heart/liver transplant was performed by Montefiore's heart and liver transplant teams on June 2.  The heart was transplanted first, by surgeons David D'Alessandro, MD, and Daniel Goldstein, MD. Then came the liver, transplanted by Amy Lu, MD and Javier Chapochnnick Friedman, MD. It took over twelve hours to transplant both organs. According to the surgeons, this was the first time a heart/liver transplant was performed in the U.S. on a patient with this rare liver enzyme defect.

Montefiore Medical Center encompasses 126 years of outstanding patient care, innovative medical "firsts," pioneering clinical research, dedicated community service and ground-breaking social activism. A full-service, integrated delivery system caring for patients in the New York metropolitan region and beyond, Montefiore is a 1,491-bed medical center that includes: four hospitals -- the Henry and Lucy Moses Division, the Jack D. Weiler Division, the North Division and The Children's Hospital at Montefiore; a large home healthcare agency; the largest school health program in the U.S.; a 22-site medical group practice integrated throughout the Bronx and Westchester; and a care management organization providing services to 179,000 health plan members.

In 2008, The Children's Hospital at Montefiore was ranked as one of "America's Best Children's Hospitals" in U.S. News & World Report's prestigious annual listing and also received honors in the magazine's 2009 edition.  The Leapfrog Group lists Montefiore among the top one percent of all U.S. hospitals based on its strategic investments in sophisticated and integrated healthcare technology.

Montefiore is committed to meeting the healthcare needs of the future through medical education and manages one of the largest residency programs in the country. Montefiore is The University Hospital and Academic Medical Center for Albert Einstein College of Medicine and has an affiliation with New York Medical College for residency programs at the North Division.

Distinguished centers of excellence at Montefiore include cardiology and cardiac surgery, cancer care, tissue and organ transplantation, children's health, women's health, surgery and the surgical subspecialties.  Montefiore is a national leader in the research and treatment of diabetes, headaches, obesity, cough and sleep disorders, geriatrics and geriatric psychiatry, neurology and neurosurgery, adolescent and family medicine, HIV/AIDS and social and environmental medicine, among many other specialties. For more information, please visit MACROBUTTON HtmlResAnchor or .

SOURCE Montefiore Medical Center