Man who received first pig kidney transplant dies

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Richard “Rick” Slayman, a 62-year-old man, got a special kind of kidney transplant from a genetically modified pig. Unfortunately, he passed away two months after the operation. The hospital where he got the transplant, Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH), said that his death didn’t seem to be because of the transplant.

Before the operation, Rick had a kidney disease that was very serious. He also had Type 2 diabetes and high blood pressure. In 2018, he got a kidney from a human, but after five years, it started to fail.

Rick’s transplant with the pig kidney happened in March. The doctors said the new kidney was working well, and he didn’t need dialysis anymore.

The hospital called Rick a symbol of hope for other people who need transplants. They thanked him for trusting them with this new kind of transplant.

Xenotransplantation is when organs or tissues from one species are put into another species. In this case, it’s a pig kidney put into a human.

Rick’s family said that he wanted to give hope to others who need transplants. They remembered him as a kind person with a good sense of humor who loved his family and friends.

Even though Rick was the first person to get a pig kidney, there have been other attempts with pig organs. Two other people got pig hearts, but they didn’t survive for long after the surgery. Sometimes, the body’s immune system rejects the new organ, which can happen with any transplant.

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