On December 12, 2018, at the Heart Institute, a press conference of the Institute’s specialists took place involving two patients with mechanical hearts implanted by the Institute’s team lead by the Director of the Institute, Professor Borys Todurov.
46-year-old Vasyl Pavlyuk from Ternopil region had implantation of the mechanical heart on October 12, and 41-year-old Denis Volkov from Odessa had implantation of the mechanical heart on November 21, 2018.
Professor Todurov said: “Recently, such patients from a “waiting list” had no chance of survival … These patients being here, together with us, is a small miracle made by specialists of the Heart Institute and the latest technologies … The mechanical heart is a bridge to the donor heart transplant, it is a temporary means to maintain life.” Professor Todurov also noted that the situation with the transplantation of donor organs in Ukraine, unfortunately, is critical due to imperfect legislation (implementing the “expression of consent”), and the lack of a working mechanism of the transplantation support at the state level. Because of this, patients from Ukraine have to travel to neighboring Belarus for heart transplantation. Belarus is one of the leaders of transplantation in Europe (unlike Ukraine, in Belarus there is a “presumption of consent” regarding donor organ transplantation). In Belarus, transplantation of donor heart costs about 120 thousand dollars. Implantation of the mechanical heart in Ukraine costs about 3 million hryvnias (about 110 thousand dollars).
Patients with a mechanical heart can live for many years and lead a normal life with minimal constraints. Vasyl Pavlyuk and Denis Volkov told reporters how they feel after implantation of the mechanical heart and sincerely thanked doctors for their salvation.