Transplant success for Siriraj
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Transplant success for Siriraj

Thailand has conducted its first successful multi-visceral transplant, according to Mahidol University's Faculty of Medicine Siriraj Hospital.

A multi-visceral transplant is one in which the intestines are replaced, along with the liver and/or spleen, and sometimes the stomach.

The news was revealed on Tuesday at a press briefing by Dr Prasit Watanapa, dean of the faculty, and a team of doctors who carried out the procedure. Also present was Naphakporn Boonyapisit, the patient who underwent the transplant almost a year ago. She is now healthy and has no complications, the team said.

Dr Yongyut Sirivatanauksorn, deputy director of Siriraj Hospital and head of the surgical team, said that in 2018 the patient was diagnosed with a tumour in her small intestine and had it removed.

Afterwards, she developed an abdominal blood clot, blocking the blood flow to the small intestine and some other abdominal organs, Dr Yongyut said. The lack of blood supply led to dysfunction in those organs, prompting surgery to remove them. But the patient was left with several complications that seriously impacted her health.

The team then agreed that the patient required transplantation of four abdominal organs en bloc, namely the intestine, liver, pancreas and stomach, Dr Yongyut said.

However, such a multi-visceral transplant had never been performed in Thailand before, so the team had to make careful preparations, he noted.

First, the team had to wait more than two years for donated organs that met the criteria and suited the patient's body, he said.

On April 2 of last year, the team was informed by the Thai Red Cross Society (TRCS) that organs from a deceased donor were available that met the criteria.

Doctors from the team rushed to the TRCS to remove and collect the organs while another group of doctors at Siriraj Hospital performed surgery on the patient to prepare for the transplant.

When the organs were brought back to the hospital, they were transplanted into the patient's body in a timely manner. The procedure took seven hours, Dr Yongyut said.

After surgery, the patient made a quick recovery. She was discharged and returned to her family on June 12 -- 72 days after the surgery.

She still has to visit the doctors regularly to follow up on her condition, Dr Yongyut said.

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