Patient Story Spotlight: Tiernee, 19

Six years after her first heart transplant, Tiernee’s body began to reject her donor heart and she developed end-stage kidney failure — her doctors knew they had to act quickly in order to save her life.

As a young girl, Tiernee suffered from a form of kidney cancer called renal cell carcinoma. In addition to losing one of her kidneys, she had to undergo chemotherapy, which seriously weakened her heart.

Tiernee received a heart transplant, but in the following years, her body rejected the donor heart and her health began to deteriorate rapidly. In addition to her heart failure, Tiernee developed end-stage kidney (renal) failure, potentially requiring dialysis for the rest of her life.

Her doctors didn’t think she’d survive the wait for another donor heart, so they decided to implant the SynCardia temporary Total Artificial Heart (TAH) to save her life and bridge her to her next transplant.

After two months of support with the TAH, Tiernee’s kidney function returned. She was discharged from the hospital using the Freedom® Portable Driver to await her transplant at home with her family.

After 414 days of life with the SynCardia TAH, Tiernee received her second donor heart. Read Tiernee’s full story here.