"The combination of emerging technologies and drugs could mean greatly improved patient management and longer survival rates," said Mandeep Mehra, M.D., Program Chair of ISHLT and an ISHLT director. "The results of these studies have been much anticipated by the transplant community."
Some of the late-breaking trial results to be revealed include:
Worldwide, approximately 4,500 cardiac transplants are performed annually. Despite significant progress made in surgical techniques and post-operative care, the risks associated with cardiac surgery remain high. The one-year survival rate after transplantation is approximately 80 percent; this number drops to nearly 50 percent after 10 years. The leading cause of death during the first three years is acute rejection of the transplanted organ. The patient's immune system attacks the heart as if it were a foreign object until it no longer functions properly.
Another contributing factor to limited survival rates is cardiac allograft vasculopathy (transplant vessel damage). This thickening of artery walls in a transplanted heart
Contact: Kelly Goff
International Society for Heart and Lung Transplantation