Doctors perform world’s first heart transplant between two HIV-positive patients

“Thanks to significant medical advances, people living with HIV are able to control the disease so well that they can now save the lives of other people living with this condition. This surgery is a milestone in the history of organ donation and offers new hope to people who once had nowhere to turn,” said Ulrich P. Jorde, M.D., Section Head – Heart Failure, Cardiac Transplantation & Mechanical Circulatory Support, and Vice Chief, Division of Cardiology at Montefiore and Professor of Medicine at Einstein.

This new procedure may open doors for many patients. In the United States alone, there are between 60,000 and 100,000 patients in need of a new heart, but only around 3,800 such transplant surgeries were performed in 2021.

“This was a complicated case and a true multidisciplinary effort by cardiology, surgery, nephrology, infectious disease, critical care and immunology,” said the patient’s cardiologist, Dr. Omar Saeed, who is also an Assistant Professor of Medicine at Einstein. “Making this option available to people living with HIV expands the pool of donors and means more people, with or without HIV, will have quicker access to a lifesaving organ. To say we are proud of what this means for our patients and the medical community at large, is an understatement.”

Leave a Comment