“When I got to Ziv Medical Center in Safed,” recalls Prof. Oz Shapira, head of Hadassah University Hospital’s Cardiothoracic Unit, “I found a man at the cusp of death.”

Prof. Shapira had been called in as a consultant for 58-year-old Zion Farjan, who had just had a heart attack and was experiencing an extremely irregular heart rhythm. As his situation deteriorated, his bodily systems began failing. The patient’s family and Prof. Shapira, in consultation with his colleagues at Hadassah, decided it was best to fly Zion to Jerusalem and bring him to Hadassah’s Intensive Care Unit, while he remained on life support.

The left chamber of Zion’s heart was the weakest, having been damaged by scarring from previous heart attacks.

At Hadassah, Prof. Shapira and his team managed to halt the deterioration and bring the patient back to consciousness, no longer in need of a breathing machine.

As Prof. Shapira explains: “We decided to implant an artificial heart. So far, the surgery has been a success and the patient is walking around the unit. He’s waiting for a donation of a human heart, but the artificial heart will bridge the waiting gap.”

Prof. Shapira adds: “Hadassah can perform the most complicated procedures, thanks to a range of distinguished staff, who provide high-level medical and nursing care. We can give hope to the sickest patients–both from Israel and around the world.”

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