Dr. Robert Higgins, cardiothoracic surgeon and chair of Ohio State’s Department of Surgery, led the transplant team through the six-hour procedure that marked this significant milestone.
“This was a great team effort including Drs. Bryan Whitson and Peter Lee, as well as many nurses and staff from the Comprehensive Transplant Center,” Higgins said. “The field of heart transplant has evolved significantly over the years. Many of these patients are alive because of mechanical devices that are used until a matching heart is available. Still, we never forget that it starts with a courageous donor family who shares the gift of life.”
Jung was diagnosed with ischemic cardiomyopathy last fall after her heart failed. At that time, doctors implanted a left ventricular assist device (LVAD) to help pump her heart. On July 3, she was put on the transplant waiting list and, on July 16, doctors implanted her new heart.
“To some, 67 may seem old, but to me and my family, it’s not. I have 18 nieces and nephews and 18 great-nieces and nephews. I still have lots of work to do,” Jung said.
Jung is the eighth person to receive a heart transplant at Ohio State this year. The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center has been performing heart transplants since 1986, and it’s the only adult heart transplant center in central Ohio.
Media Contact: Sherri Kirk, Wexner Medical Center Media Relations, 614-293-3737, or Sherri.Kirk@osumc.edu