LOUISVILLE ABIOCOR SURGEONS REPORT
ON PATIENTS' PROGRESS
Governor Patton enjoys visit with Kentucky
(Louisville, Ky.) - The University of Louisville
surgeons who implanted the world's first and second totally implantable
replacement hearts at Jewish Hospital reported today that Bob Tools
and Tom Christerson are each recovering well from their AbioCor
implant surgeries, which took place July 2 and September 13 respectively.
Joining Drs. Laman Gray and Rob Dowling at the news
briefing was Governor Paul Patton, who had the opportunity to visit
with both patients earlier in the day. "I spoke with Mr. Tools
about fishing and his recovery, and even got to listen to his heartbeat,"
the Governor reported. "Mr. Christerson sells tires to the
coal mining industry, which was my business, and we talked about
The Governor stated "after meeting and talking
to these fine gentlemen, there is no doubt in my mind that patients
can enjoy a high quality of life with this device."
Reporting on their clinical conditions, Drs. Gray
and Dowling continue to be cautiously optimistic about their patients'
Reporting on Mr. Tools' recovery, now in its 85th
day, Dr. Gray said that he is "gaining weight and enjoying
excursions outside the hospital." Gray continued, "He
is doing very well, and his kidney, liver and lung function remain
Dr. Dowling described Mr. Christerson as improving
12 days after surgery, but cautioned that he is still in the very
early stages of recovery. "He has been off the ventilator since
the first day after surgery," Dowling explained. "He,
like Mr. Tools, is very strong willed and has been a great patient."
Jewish Hospital is among the top 10 cardiac
centers in the United States and, along with the University of Louisville,
is dedicated to excellence in patient care, research and education.
University of Louisville surgeons at Jewish Hospital have performed
many heart care "firsts," including Kentucky's first heart
transplant, the world's first heart transplant following the use
of a Thoratec right ventricular assist device, the world's first
endoscopic saphenous vein harvest and the first ventricular remodeling
in the region.
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