Transferring a heart from Dubai to Riyadh: Emirati girl becomes 'youngest' child to get transplant in Middle East

Surgical team flew from Saudi Arabia to UAE to obtain an organ from deceased donor

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Photo for illustrative purposes only
Photo for illustrative purposes only

By Web Desk

Published: Mon 9 Jan 2023, 2:21 PM

Last updated: Mon 9 Jan 2023, 10:30 PM

An Emirati girl has become the youngest child in the Middle East to undergo a heart transplant, according to King Faisal Specialist Hospital & Research Centre (KFSH&RC).

Another child - a 19-month-old Saudi national - also received a heart transplant within 24 hours. Both patients were in a critical condition due to heart failures.

For the first surgery, which was performed on the Emirati girl, a surgical team from (KFSH&RC) travelled to Dubai to remove the heart from the deceased donor. The complicated travel and transfer between Dubai and Riyadh was facilitated by The Saudi Center for Organ Transplantation, the Saudi Ministry of Defense's aeromedical evacuation team, and UAE's National Centre for Regulating Donation and Transplantation of Human Organs and Tissue. The succesful surgery resulted in the 8-month old Emirati being the youngest child to undergo a heart transplant in the Middle East.

The second surgery was performed on the 19-month-old Saudi girl after the surgical team travelled from Riyadh to Makkah Al Mukarramah to remove the heart of the deceased donor and then transported the heart to Riyadh.

The girls' conditions have been steadily improving post-surgery, with medical teams checking on them regularly.


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