Organs can be repaired outside the body – New technique pioneered by Dr. Shaf Keshavjee

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Organs can be repaired outside the body

Toronto General Hospital's Dr. Shaf Keshavjee has helped develop a new technique that can repair and prepare lungs for transplant.

To see these lungs that are damaged and 12 hours later are perfect is fascinating,” said Dr. Shaf Keshavjee, who headed the project. “Worldwide, this strategy could easily double the number of lung transplants that are done … It’s a phenomenally exciting advance.

Tom Blackwell, National Post Published: Friday, December 19, 2008

TORONTO — In the life-and-death world of lung transplantation, the statistics can be heart-breaking. While at least one in five patients dies waiting for a transplant, as many as 90% of donated lungs have to be discarded because the fragile organs are too damaged.

Surgeons at a Toronto hospital announced on Friday, however, that they have found a way to beat the discouraging odds with an “amazing” new procedure touted as the first of its kind in the world.

Complete at the source.
Earlier related:
Pioneering Ismaili transplant surgeon from Toronto – Shaf Keshavjee

Author: ismailimail

Independent, civil society media featuring Ismaili Muslim community, inter and intra faith endeavors, achievements and humanitarian works.

6 thoughts

  1. We should all be thankful for the brilliant, enquiring and inspired mind of Dr Shaf Keshavjee, whose amazing discoveries in the field of lung transplantation will benefit 6+ billion human beings on the planet. This is the very, very best of the cosmopolitan ethic Hazar Imam talks about. It reminds me of:

    “A thousand years ago, my forefathers, the Fatimid imam-caliphs of Egypt, founded al-Azhar University and the Academy of Knowledge in Cairo. In the Islamic tradition, they viewed the discovery of knowledge as a way to understand, so as to serve better God’s creation, to apply knowledge and reason to build society and shape human aspirations”(Aga Khan IV, Speech, 25th June 2004, Matola, Mozambique.)

    “Nature is the great daily book of God whose secrets must be found and used for the well-being of humanity”(Aga Khan III, Radio Pakistan, Karachi, Pakistan, February 19th 1950)

    “In fact this world is a book in which you see inscribed the writings of God the Almighty”(Nasir Khusraw, 11th century Ismaili cosmologist-philosopher-poet)

    “No belief is like modesty and patience, no attainment is like humility, no honour is like knowledge, no power is like forbearance, and no support is more reliable than consultation”(Hazrat Ali, the first Imam of Shia Islam, circa 650CE)

    “One hour of contemplation on the works of the Creator is better than a thousand hours of prayer”(Prophet Muhammad, circa 632CE)

    “All human beings, by their nature, desire to know.”(Aristotle, The Metaphysics, circa 322BC)

    Above quotes taken from Blogpost Four Hundred:


  2. About Shaf Keshavjee and his team of Toronto surgeons:

    “But a team of Toronto surgeons has become a world leader in a new technique that could take time out of the equation, revolutionizing the field of organ transplants and saving countless lives.

    …..the Toronto researchers have been long-time innovators: “We’re lucky to have a Canadian team at the forefront of this. … This is tremendously exciting.”

    Toronto has now become the prime test site for the procedure in North America.”

    From The Globe and Mail:


  3. February 17th 2009
    Teen had artificial lung, now playing soccer again

    Last July, while in Sick Kids Hospital awaiting a lung transplant, Katie suddenly took a turn for the worse. With her heart failing, a team led by Dr. Shaf Keshavjee made a last-ditch effort to save her.

    “Katie was gravely ill and, in fact, had a short period of cardiac arrest in the operating room,” said Keshavjee, director of the Toronto Lung Transplant Program. “She would not have survived that night, when we put in the device.”

    “We’ve had three or four children before listed for transplant with pulmonary hypertension and they’ve died on the list because we haven’t got a lung soon enough,” said Keshavjee. “So it was unique that we were able to bridge her, or keep her alive, long enough to get a lung transplant.”

    Keshavjee, crediting the groundbreaking work to the efforts of a team of doctors, nurses and other staff, said he feels “absolutely fantastic” that the artificial lung worked so well on a young patient.

    “These patients with pulmonary hypertension do so well when you transplant them and it’s always such a tragedy when you can’t get them to transplant,” he said. “I thought the device would work in this setting for these patients. But you can’t know until you actually do it.”


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