Materia Medica Malaysiana

January 18, 2008

Crucial role of homograft banks

Filed under: Uncategorized — malaysianmedicine @ 9:42 am

NST: KUALA LUMPUR: Besides direct organ transplants from brain-dead patients, selected hospitals have homograft banks where, for example, heart valves, corneas, certain tissues and bones are kept for use when the need arises.
Since 1992, the National Heart Institute (IJN) has had a homograft valve bank following requests from cardiac surgeons for quality-controlled, cryo-preserved heart valve homografts.
Homografts are tissues extracted from one species and implanted into a member of the same species.
In the case of cardiac homografts, the tissues are the aorta with the aortic valve and the anterior mitral valve leaflet; the main pulmonary artery, including the first few centimetres of the branch pulmonary arteries, and the pulmonary valve.
“The homografts are for patients with various cardiac diseases. In the majority of these cases, the outcome has been excellent. Before, all the homografts were flown in from tissue banks overseas,” said head of the IJN Department of Anaesthesiology and Intensive Care Unit, Datuk Dr Syed Abdul Aziz Syed Zin.
Dr Syed Abdul Aziz said the tissues were extracted from fresh cadavers and cryo-preserved for use in patients who need aortic valve replacements, or for the treatment of congenital heart diseases.
“IJN has successfully retrieved, prepared and implanted cardiac homografts in more than 110 patients.
“The homograft unit at IJN comprises cardiothoracic surgeons and perfusionists/medical technicians who are involved in retrieving, processing and cryo-preserving homograft tissues for storage.” he said, adding that children particularly, can benefit from homografts, where the need for small-sized prostheses and freedom from anti-coagulants are critical.

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