Heart transplant

Brooklyn Heights teen had first heart transplant at Hassenfeld Children’s Hospital in NYU Langone

NEW YORK (WABC) – A teenager from Brooklyn Heights underwent the first ever heart transplant at Hassenfeld Children’s Hospital in NYU Langone.

Maz Zisan, 18, was diagnosed with end-stage heart failure before a team of pediatric cardiac surgeons successfully replaced his heart about three weeks ago.

Zisan suffered from hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM), a rare heart disease in which the heart muscle becomes abnormally thick, making it difficult for his heart to pump blood to the rest of his body.

“Heart transplantation was the only saving option to give Maz a better second chance at life,” said Dr Rakesh Singh, medical director of the Pediatric Heart Failure and Transplant Program, pediatric cardiologist and associate professor in the department of pediatrics. . at the Hassenfeld Children’s Hospital in NYU Langone. “The success of our first transplant is a testament to the teamwork at Hassenfeld Children’s Hospital in NYU Langone.”

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Since Zisan was 14, he trained regularly in the gymnasium, particularly interested in mixed martial arts.

“Over time, I noticed how quickly I was getting short of breath and slowing down compared to my friends in cardio-related activities,” he said. “I was taking pre-workout supplements and drinking copious amounts of coffee to try to keep up, without giving it much thought.”

In December 2019, he suddenly passed out when leaving an SAT practice test at his high school. He was rushed to a local Brooklyn hospital and diagnosed with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, a shocking discovery for Zisan and his family.

Since his unexpected diagnosis at 16, he has had to sit on the sidelines while his friends played sports, worked out and did normal activities that tired him much faster than others. He suffered from continuous episodes of palpitations, dizziness and fainting.

Zisan was brought to Hassenfeld Children’s Hospital in NYU Langone shortly after his diagnosis to see Dr. Frank Cecchin, Andrall E. Pearson Professor of Pediatric Cardiology and Director of the Division of Pediatric Cardiology.

He immediately placed a defibrillator to protect Zisan from life-threatening arrhythmias and put him on some heart medication to manage the illness.

In June 2020, Dr Cecchin referred Zisan to Dr Singh in the Pediatric Heart Failure and Transplant Program to manage his symptoms of ongoing heart failure.

Dr Singh led the team in evaluating Zisan to see if he would be a good candidate for a transplant.

“It was clear after months of monitoring Maz that he was quite limited in his basic activities at home and away,” Dr Singh said. “A treadmill stress test in March showed a significant drop in her exercise capacity, and given her persistent heart failure symptoms despite maximum medical management of her HCM, the only option to improve her quality. of life was a heart transplant. “

He was put on the transplant waiting list on April 9 of this year, and on August 26, he received a call telling him that an organ donor was available.

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The transplant procedure was performed by Dr TK Susheel Kumar, Surgical Director of the Pediatric Heart Failure and Transplantation Program, Pediatric Cardiac Surgeon and Associate Professor in the Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery, and Dr Nader Moazami, Surgical Director of Transplantation adult heart disease at the NYU Langone Transplant Institute and head of the heart and lung transplantation and mechanical circulatory support division.

“He is in good health and is returning home today thanks to the excellent care he received at all levels, especially in the Pediatric Heart Failure and Transplant Program here at NYU Langone,” said the Dr Kumar. “I am grateful to everyone who took care of Maz and I feel fortunate to be part of a team that constantly strives to achieve the best results for each of our patients. It has been our privilege to see this transplant. be successful and I couldn’t be happier for Maz and his family. “

Zisan is looking forward to starting his first semester at university, where he will study mechanical engineering and return to mixed martial arts with his new heart.

Only 12% of heart transplants involve children, or around 600 worldwide each year. Most of these surgeries take place in the United States, but this was the first pediatric heart transplant at NYU Langone.

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