AP-MO--HeartTransplant-C 12-07

1 decade 2 years 6 months ago Wednesday, April 05 2006 Apr 5, 2006 Wednesday, April 05, 2006 1:06:41 PM CDT April 05, 2006 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) -- Former professional soccer goalie Jim Tietjens (TEET'-jenz) always keeps in mind that a donated heart got his life back to normal. He says he knew life would change for the better when he got out of surgery at Barnes-Jewish Hospital in St. Louis twelve years ago. Today, dozens of organ recipients, family members and hospital staff celebrated the 20th anniversary of the hospital's heart transplant program. Barnes-Jewish has performed more than 500 heart transplants since its heart transplant program began in 1985. The program is now the largest in Missouri, and has a reputation for taking on challenging patients who were turned down at other centers. A hospital spokeswoman says that after 20 years, almost half the 500 Barnes-Jewish heart transplant recipients are still alive.

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