ABIOCOR PATIENT CELEBRATES ONE YEAR
Tom Christerson To Mark Occasion At Party with Jewish Hospital/UofL
LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Artificial
heart patient Tom Christerson will celebrate the anniversary of
his landmark surgery on Sept.13 with the Jewish Hospital nurses
and staff who helped care for him and his University of Louisville
surgeons Laman Gray, M.D. and Rob Dowling, M.D.
Mr. Christerson underwent surgery
Sept.13, 2001, becoming the second person in the world to receive
the AbioCor™ Implantable Replacement Heart, manufactured
by ABIOMED of Danvers, Mass. Mr. Christerson is now the longest
living and only surviving AbioCor heart recipient. He is also
the first artificial heart patient to go home.
Members of the press are invited to
share in the celebration with Mr. Christerson from 10 to 11 a.m.
at the Conference Center at the Rudd Heart and Lung Center. Neither
he nor his family members will be granting interviews. Media will
be able to photograph or video Mr. Christerson’s interaction
with the staff and his physicians.
Mr. Christerson and his family have
received a number of requests for interviews. They have decided
to accommodate all the requests as best they can by releasing
background video. The b-roll will contain comments from Mr. Christerson
and his daughter, Patti Pryor. The footage will also include previously-released
coverage of Mr. Christerson during his physical therapy and enjoying
time with friends in Central City.
In the b-roll, Mr. Christerson will
reflect on the year with the device. He will talk about such things
as his time with the device: “I didn’t have any idea
it would last this long. I thought it would give me another six
months. But I got a year so far.” He also talked about having
a second chance: “I’m tickled to death with it.”
The b-roll interview of Mr.
Christerson will be available at Jewish Hospital’s public
relations office at 410 S. First Street on Sept.12 from 9 a.m.
to noon. Local news stations should work with their national affiliate
stations. The b-roll interview segment will be the only interview
available with Mr. Christerson.
The Sept. 13, 2002 celebration, b-roll and a briefing from the
physicians will be up-linked via satellite coordinates Ku-Band
SBS 6, Transponder 5, Horizontal Frequency 11823 MHZ. The audio
frequency is 6.20/6.80. The signal will be available from 2:30-3
p.m. (EST), Friday, Sept. 13.