Heart transplants affect more than 450,000 French people each year. The history of heart transplantation begins in 1967, “It was something completely magical, changing the heart of a person who could live afterwards, it was miraculous. I was far from imagining that one day I would be one of the people who had the chance to be grafted “, explains Thierry Gesson, first vice-president Federation of heart lung transplants, in the 19/20 of Saturday 13 February.
Emmanuel Vitria was the third French heart transplant recipient, on December 5, 1968, he appeared on television. “It was a bit of science fiction for this generation, it didn’t make sense to be able to do surgery like that”, reports Thierry Gesson. Christiaan Barnard, South African professor, led the way on December 3, 1967 by performing a heart transplant. Yet the one who developed is American, his name is Norman Shumway. The glory of the first heart transplant eludes him due to a US law that pronounces death when the heart stops.
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