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Sydney (AFP) – Australian surgeons said Friday they have used hearts that had stopped beating in successful transplants, in a world first that could change the way organs are donated.
Until now, doctors have relied on using the still-beating hearts of donors who have been declared brain dead, often placing the recovered organs on ice and rushing them to their recipients.
But Sydney’s St Vincent’s Hospital and the Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute have developed a technique which means hearts which had been still for 20 minutes can be resuscitated and transplanted into a patient.
So far three people have received hearts in this way, with two recovering well and the third and most recent recipient still requiring intensive care.
“They are the only three in the world,” surgeon Kumud Dhital, who is an associate professor at the University of New South Wales in Sydney, told AFP.
“We know that within a certain period of time the heart, like other organs, can be reanimated, restarted, and only now have we been able to do it in a fashion whereby a heart that has stopped somewhere can be retrieved by the transplant team, put on the machine… and then (surgeons can) transplant it.”
The technique involves donor hearts being transferred to a portable machine known as a “heart in a box” in which they were placed in a preservation solution, resuscitated and kept warm.
Professor Peter MacDonald, medical director of the St Vincent’s Heart Transplant Unit, said the use of hearts “donated after circulatory death” would make far more available for transplant.
“This breakthrough represents a major inroad to reducing the shortage of donor organs,” he said.
Michelle Gribilas, the first patient to receive one of the three hearts, said she was very sick before her operation.
“Now I’m a different person altogether,” the 57-year-old said. “I feel like I’m 40 years old. I’m very lucky.”
The second recipient, Jan Damen, who had the surgery about two weeks ago, said he felt “amazing”.
“I’m not religious or spiritual but it’s a wild thing to get your head around,” he said.
Dhital said reanimating hearts using the machine could increase safety for patients because it gave surgeons confidence that the organ was functioning.
“I would suggest that in the next five years or so we will be shifting more and more towards machine preservation of hearts,” he said.
San Francisco (AFP) – San Francisco pitcher Tim Hudson takes the mound on Friday as the Giants host Kansas City in game three of the World Series, a chance on baseball’s biggest stage he once feared might never come.
The 39-year-old right-hander has 16 seasons in Major League Baseball — making 457 career starts for Oakland, Atlanta and San Francisco.
In the early years, when playoff appearances were plentiful, he never doubted that he would one day pitch in a World Series.
But as post-season trips dried up, he admits doubts began to creep in.
“You see the window start to gradually shrink,” Hudson said Thursday.
When his 2013 season ended with a broken right ankle in July “things looked bleak for a little bit there,” Hudson said.
But he inked a $23 million two-year contract last November with the Giants, joining up with a contender that won the World Series in 2010 and 2012.
Now he finds himself tasked with leading their bid to rebound from a game-two loss to the Royals in Kansas City on Wednesday that knotted American baseball’s best-of-seven championship showcase at one game apiece.
“Obviously it’s the biggest stage, it’s the pinnacle of baseball,” he said. “This is what everybody hopes and dreams for throughout their career. It’s obviously a bigger, brighter stage, but at the end of the day it’s the same game we’ve played all year.
“It’s the same game we’ve played our whole lives. It’s just going out there and controlling those emotions and understanding that it’s still a simple game. You’ve got to go out there and make pitches, have a solid game plan and be mentally and physically prepared.”
He’s prepared not only to take on Kansas City hitters, but also to try to inhibit the Royals’ aggressive baserunning style.
The Royals’ 31 stolen bases in the regular season were the most in the American League.
Royals manager Ned Yost, whose team is back in the post-season for the first time since winning their only title in 1985, believes speedy runners can put pressure on opposing pitchers, pulling them out of their rhythm as they try to hold runners on base.
“That’s the idea behind it,” he said. “You want to try to divert some of the attention away from the pitcher’s main focus, which is concentrating on getting that hitter out, and having some of that focus go over here. It helps the hitters.”
Said Hudson of the challenge: “You obviously have to be concerned with it.
“You have to vary your times. You have to be a little quicker to the plate than you normally are. You can’t have the same cadence every pitch to the plate. They’ll take second, third on you every time.”
- Pivotal game three -
Hudson is well aware what’s on the line on Friday.
In World Series that have been tied at one game each, the team winning game three has gone on to win the series 66 percent of the time.
“It’s all of a sudden essentially a five-game series right now,” he said.
Giants hurler Madison Bumgarner baffled Kansas City hitters as San Francisco won the opener in Kansas City 7-1.
Yost said bouncing back with a 7-2 game-two triumph was crucial for the Royals.
“For me, it wasn’t necessarily a must-win game, but it was as close to a must-win game as you can get,” said Yost, who gives the ball to pitcher Jeremy Guthrie on Friday.
Guthrie, a 10-year veteran, is playing in his first post-season.
In his one prior playoff start, he allowed one run in five innings against Baltimore in game three of the American League final.
“Our guys are really confident,” Yost said. “We feel pretty good where we sit right now.”
We murdered together, we ate together, we laughed together because that's what you do whenever Sp4zies in the house! CTDM!
Song: Off to Osaka
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Thanks Mats 'Prosthetic' Andersson for the Swedish intro! https://soundcloud.com/mrblueberry-1
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Taylor Swift had to “campaign” to get record label executives on her side to support her vision for 1989.
Pixelmator has long been a favorite among artists and photographers seeking an alternative to the subscription-based Adobe Photoshop. Its appearance onstage at Apple’s most recent event to introduce its eagerly awaited iPad app has certainly given Pixelmator’s profile a boost. Now that it’s here — just in time for iOS 8 — we took Pixelmator for iPad for a spin and found it a solid contribution to the slate of image editors out there for the iPad, and especially useful for those already using Pixelmator. With the mobile Pixelmator, available for iOS only, you can create drawings and paintings from scratch or pull photos in…
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