German Man Bridged-to-Transplant After 615 Days of Life with SynCardia’s Total Artificial Heart
51-Year-Old Wanted to Keep His Total Artificial Heart but Feels “Newborn” After Donor Heart Transplant
TUCSON, Ariz. – Jan. 26, 2010 – Bobby Dhawan, 51, is the owner of a successful taxi service in Germany. Normally, he does not allow bumper stickers to be placed on his cabs, but recently, he made a special exception for a sticker which reads, “Don’t take your organs to heaven - heaven knows we need them here!”
Last August, Dhawan received a donor heart transplant after living for 615 days with a SynCardia temporary CardioWest™ Total Artificial Heart. For nearly a year and a half prior to his transplant, Dhawan had enjoyed life at home with his family and gone back to work using the European portable driver to power his Total Artificial Heart.
“With the Total Artificial Heart, my health was so good and I felt so strong. I told myself, ‘I don’t want a human heart anymore, I want to keep my Total Artificial Heart,’ ” said Dhawan. “Today however, I think the donor heart transplant is the best thing I’ve ever done. I feel like a newborn person.”
Dhawan was first diagnosed with an enlarged heart in 1996. Over the next 10 years, the cycle of getting sick, then getting better kept repeating. In 2007, Dhawan lost consciousness while driving and crashed into a wall at 80 km (50 miles) per hour. When he arrived at the hospital, doctors told him his heartbeat was irregular and extremely high, around 180-200 beats per minute.
Later, Dhawan was sent to the Heart & Diabetes Center NRW in Bad Oeynhausen, Germany. Doctors told him that if they didn’t implant the Total Artificial Heart, he would die within the next 48 hours.
“The Total Artificial Heart not only saved my life, it saved my family’s future,” said Dhawan. “My taxi company has 17 cars and 35 drivers, and my wife wouldn’t have been able to run the business alone. Today, my donor heart is working really well and I am back running my business. Other than having to take anti-rejection medication, I feel really great.”
About SynCardia Systems, LLC
SynCardia Systems, LLC in Tucson, Ariz., is the privately-held manufacturer of the world's first and only FDA, Health Canada and CE approved Total Artificial Heart. For people suffering from end-stage heart failure affecting both sides of the heart (biventricular failure), the SynCardia temporary Total Artificial Heart is used as a bridge to transplant, helping them survive until a matching donor heart becomes available. SynCardia also manufactures the Freedom® portable driver, which powers the temporary Total Artificial Heart and allows clinically stable patients to be discharged from the hospital to enjoy life at home while they wait for a heart transplant.
Janelle Drumwright, firstname.lastname@example.org, (520) 547-7463