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Heart Implanted to Save Life 'Performing Beautifully'

October 26, 1985|Associated Press

PITTSBURGH — A Jarvik-7 artificial heart implanted to save the life of a 47-year-old factory worker was "performing beautifully" Friday as doctors searched for a suitable human heart donor, hospital officials said.

Meanwhile, across the state in Hershey, Anthony Mandia, 44, of Philadelphia, continued to improve with the Penn State artificial heart, also designed as a temporary blood pump.

The Pittsburgh patient, Thomas J. Gaidosh, "will receive the next available heart. They (doctors) feel comfortable he could withstand the procedure," said Tom Chakurda, a spokesman for Presbyterian-University Hospital, affiliated with the University of Pittsburgh.

'Very Encouraging'

"So far, so good," Chakurda said of Gaidosh's condition. "The preliminary indications are very encouraging at this time."

The patient responded to voice and touch and moved his arms and legs Friday, Chakurda said.

Gaidosh, of Sutersville, received the Jarvik-7 heart during six hours of emergency surgery Thursday. He is the second person to receive the Jarvik-7 on a temporary basis and the third person to receive an artificial heart as an interim device in authorized, emergency surgery.

Gaidosh underwent second, unscheduled surgery Friday morning because of an "unacceptable accumulation of blood in the chest," said Dr. Bartley Griffith, who led the implant team. Gaidosh was returned to the surgical intensive-care unit an hour later, where he was listed in critical condition.

Gaidosh suffered from idiopathic cardiomyopathy, a disease in which the heart's functions are greatly impaired. He had deteriorated to the point where "death was imminent" and was not expected to survive another 24 hours, a hospital spokeswoman said.

Search for Donor Heart

At the Hershey Medical Center, doctors continued searching for a suitable donor heart for Mandia, who began his second week Friday with the Penn State artificial heart.

Mandia, who received his heart Oct. 18, was listed in critical but stable condition. He was alert and free of the abdominal pains that he had suffered Thursday, said Hershey spokesman Dr. John W. Burnside.

The Penn State heart was designed by Dr. William Pierce of the Pennsylvania State University to decrease clotting problems that have plagued the Jarvik-7.

Both the Penn State and Jarvik-7 hearts are connected to air pumps outside the body.

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