For the first time ever in Israel, the dedicated staff at the Rabin Medical Center performed a small intestine transplant in an adult. The operation lasted 10 hours, and required immense planning and preparation. Prior to this, small intestine transplants had only been performed in a few, select hospitals throughout the world.
The recipient was a 39-year old woman, whose own intestine had been removed two years ago, after which she became completely dependent on intravenous feeding, or total parenteral nutrition (TPN).
The team was led by Prof. Eytan Mor, head of the transplantation department at Rabin Medical Center. After the procedure he expressed cautious optimism; “We are talking about a challenging transplantation in a young woman who was in a bad condition. The coming days are crucial in assessing the success of the transplant.”
Immediately after surgery concluded, the woman was placed in the intensive care unit at Rabin Medical Center, where she will remain under close observation for at least two to three weeks.
While no organ transplantation procedures are simple, this type of operation is particularly difficult and requires a large team of specialists to perform it properly. Additionally, prior to even scheduling surgery, a suitable donor under the age of 45, with a small body type must be found.
"I'm shrinking! I'm in menopause! That's when God says,' Thank you for your children'" said actress Tovah Feldshuh, host at the May 1 American Friends of Rabin Medical Center's luncheon at Manhattan's landmark 21 Club, before handing the mic over to guest speaker Delia Ephron.
The story of Rabin Medical Center is the grand story of Israel, of the sacrifices made by men and women daring to create a Jewish State where Jews could finally feel safe from 2000 years of anti-Semitism, Holocaust, and oppression.