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The World’s First Successful Multiple-Organ Transplantation in a Child

A nine-year-old child received a liver and lung transplant.

This very complicated operation was performed at the V. I. Shumakova Scientific Medical Research Center for Transplantology and Artificial Organs (NMITs).

After birth, the boy was found to have hereditary systemic cystic fibrosis. Progression of liver cirrhosis began when the child was six years old, and problems subsequently developed with his lungs. As a result, the child needed surgery.

According to an TASS article quoting Sergei Gotye of the V.I. Shumakov National Medical Research Center, “When Misha came to us, he had cirrhosis of the liver and a huge spleen, but respiratory insufficiency was the primary issue. Obviously, a liver transplant would not be possible with lungs like that. We began studying the possibilities for a combined liver and lung transplant, although there had not been a single successful operation in a small child anywhere in the world. A few attempts had actually been made. We looked in all of the registers: there have been around 100 such operations during the last 25 years, with only three attempts in the under-11 age group.”

The child’s mother said she was warned this would be the first operation of the type in the world. But she decided to go ahead, because she had total faith in the doctors. The operation lasted 16 hours and was a success.