A team of doctors in Pune city successfully retrieved and transported the heart of a 31-year-old brain-dead man to give a new lease of life to a Mumbai patient on Thursday, as Ganeshotsav festivities hit a crescendo with the immersion of Ganapati idols .

This is the fifth heart donation made from the city this year, so far. The donor’s other organs like liver and kidneys were transplanted into three other patients – one from Nashik and two from Pune.

The donor, a call centre employee, was admitted to Ruby Hall Clinic on September 13 for unrelenting headache. “Upon investigations, he was diagnosed with colloid cyst in the brain. Doctors had suggested brain surgery to the relatives, but had also made it clear that it might not help,” said the hospital’s transplant coordinator Surekha Joshi.

The man was declared brain dead on Wednesday evening.

“His parents, who are farmers from Shrigonda in Ahmednagar district, were initially reluctant to donate his organs. But post-counselling, his father, brother and wife consented to donate his vital organs,” Joshi said. The donor has a two-year-old daughter.

Soon after the relative’s consent, the hospital administration informed Zonal Transplant Coordination Committee (ZTCC) co-ordinator. “Since they had a recipient who was fit enough to undergo the transplant surgery at Mumbai’s Fortis hospital, the team of doctors arrived in Pune around 5am on Thursday. They started the retrieval of the heart around 9am and finished it by 11am,” she added.

The retrieved heart was kept in medical preservation solution and transported in an ambulance to the Lohegaon Airport.

“The ambulance carrying the donated heart left Ruby Hall at 11.38am and reached the airport within eight minutes through a green corridor. Thereafter, the heart was flown at 11.55am in a chartered flight to Mumbai. It reached Fortis hospital around 12.43pm through a green corridor from the airport in Mumbai,” said ZTCC coordinator AartiGokhale.

The surgery was successful and the receiver of the organ is on road to recovery, authorities said.

“The man’s liver was successfully transplanted into a middle-aged man from Pune, who had been suffering from end-stage liver disease, the same day,” Joshi said.

He added that his kidneys were allocated to Deenanath Mangeshkar Hospital (DMH) in Pune and Wockhardt Hospital in Nashik where they were successfully transplanted into two needy patients.

“We are awaiting the licence for heart transplant. We have made all the requisite compliances but it is unfortunate that it is taking so long. Once in place, it will be a crucial medical service given that not a single hospital in Pune has the licence to perform heart transplants,” said Bomi Bhote, chief executive officer of Ruby Hall Clinic.

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