For the first time in Israel, Rabin Medical Center (RMC) preformed a domino liver where a liver from one donor saved the life of two patients. These unique and complex liver transplantations which took 10 hours in two adjacent operating theaters required a special medical team, including five transplantation surgeons, three anesthesiologists, nurses, an intensive care team and the assistance of the blood bank.
The first transplant recipient was a 61 year old Arieh Tzbari man who suffered from a rare genetic disease which caused his liver to produce an abnormal protein. According to Prof. Ran Tur-Kaspa, Director of the Liver Institute at RMC, this resulted in damage of his nervous system which can then damage the heart and digestive system. A liver transplantation was the only way to stop the progression of this disease. Yet strangely enough his liver could be can be transplanted in another person where it can function properly for years. So when he received a liver from someone who had passed away it was possible to to save another life.
The lucky recipient was a 65 year Hassan Zfady old man suffering from advanced chronic liver disease associated with liver cancer. Due to the shortage of organs in Israel it was decided to give him this liver which would give him at least another 10-15 years. The doctors did not feel that he had time to wait for a matching liver. Prof. Eytan Mor, Director of the Department of Organ Transplantation at RMC, led these surgeries: "The main difficulty in this type of transplant is twofold: the technical part to maintain the adequate length of the three liver vessels (artery, portal vein and hepatic vein) for both patients. The other problem is to coordinate the procedure between three groups of surgeons working parallel. Fortunately, the transplants were successful and we managed to help two patients at the same time, despite the severe shortage of organs for transplantation in Israel".
The transplant team included Prof. Eytan Mor, Dr. Ezra Sharbani, Dr. Evgeny Solomonov, Dr. Sigal Eisner and Dr. Eviatar Nesher.
Dr. Eyran Halpern, CEO of Rabin Medical Center: "I am sincerely proud of the profession medical team at our hospital which carried out simultaneously these two very complex challenging surgeries".
Only about 300 domino transplants have been carried out worldwide.
Pictured from L to R: Arieh Tzbari, Prof. Eytan Mor, Director of the Department of Organ Transplantation at RMC and Hassan Zfady