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Last updated: 27 Sep, 2014  

Fortis Launches India's First Centre for Heart Transplant

PR Newswire | 09 May, 2014
Fortis Launches India's First Comprehensive Centre for Treatment of End-stage Heart Failure and Transplant at Fortis Malar Hospital, Chennai; Becomes the Largest Heart Failure Program in the Country

CHENNAI: Having set benchmarks in patient care with its path breaking work, Fortis has set up a world-class comprehensive centre for heart failure and heart transplant, at the Fortis Malar Hospital, in Chennai, known for over two decades for its excellence in cardiac care. The speciality centre under the leadership of Dr. K R Balakrishnan, Director Cardiac Sciences and Dr. Suresh Rao K. G, Chief of Cardiac Anesthesia and Critical Care, is ably supported by an experienced team of leading cardiac experts. It offers India's first comprehensive Heart Failure, Heart Transplant and Artificial Heart Program with extensive options for treatment and management of congestive heart failure.

Inaugurating the centre, Mr Aditya Vij, CEO, Fortis Healthcare Limited and Chairman, Fortis Malar Hospitals Limited said, "Advances in medicine have made heart transplants safer and a real option in managing cases of end stage heart failure. Cardiac care at Fortis Malar is well established and ranked amongst the finest in the country. Our team of highly accomplished doctors led by Dr Balakrishnan and Dr Rao have done pioneering work in the field and have performed the largest number of successful heart transplants in the country. We are therefore pleased to institutionalize the programme by setting up a specialized Fortis Centre for Heart Failure and Transplant  at the facility. I am sure the Centre will benefit many of our patients who will no longer have to seek treatment abroad for treatment of heart failure."

Dr. K R Balakrishnan, Director, Cardiac Sciences, Fortis Centre for Heart Failure and Transplant, at Fortis Malar, said, "The majority of patients who can benefit from our advanced therapy are not aware of the facilities available in India. Moreover, in Tamil Nadu alone, each year, 100-150 organ donors are available but the heart transplants carried out are around 20. Our goal is to provide the highest quality of patient-centered care to many more patients, right here in India, utilizing our interdisciplinary approach, enormous talent and the multi-skilled resources within our team."

Heart failure is a major health concern worldwide including in India. Twenty million people world-wide suffer from heart failure, out of which India witnesses two million new cases every year with at least a third of them requiring advanced therapy to survive. It is also important to note that, the mortality in heart failure patients is as high as 30-40%, within a year of diagnosis. In India, the treatment for heart failure is restricted to medical therapy, revascularization therapy (restoration/augmentation of blood supply to the heart), valvular surgeries and cardiac resynchronization (heart pacing) therapy.

With copious and wide ranging experience in handling heart failure patients including the implanting of India's first artificial heart, Fortis Malar Hospital is recognized all over the world today as a centre of excellence providing the latest technology in heart care.

The Fortis Centre for Heart Failure Management and Heart Transplant

What sets the Fortis Centre for Heart Failure Management and Heart Transplant apart is its designation as a Ventricular Assist Device (VAD) Destination Therapy Center, a bridge to a transplant incase it is required later. Ventricular Assist Devices (VADs) are implantable mechanical heart pumps. They have been used in recent times to sustain patients who are candidates for heart transplant as they await a donor heart and are increasingly being used as a substitute for transplantation. Emerging research shows that VAD patients find that their hearts actually improve with help from these mechanical pumps.

The comprehensive heart disease management programme also includes preventive measures to avoid heart failure, cardiopulmonary testing including peak oxygen consumption measurement, ECMO (lung heart machine) as a bridge to a transplant or a bridge to a decision, nutritional counselling designed to help patients adhere to a complex medical regimen and a specialized low-sodium (salt) diet. In addition, patients learn to recognize fluid retention, that signals heart failure. They are counselled on aspects of cardiac rehabilitation and individualized exercise plans are drawn up for them to strengthen their heart muscle, improve blood circulation and support the recovery process.

The cardiac transplant team at Fortis Malar has so far performed 35-ECMO, 16 heart-transplants, 5-VAD's and is credited with India's first successful implantation of Heartmate II LVAD and HVAD, a mechanical artificial heart pump.

The entire team of physicians, coordinators and nursing staff are highly trained individuals with many years of experience in the field of  transplant and heart failure management providing pre-operative, peri-operative and post-operative care.

About Centre of Excellence for Advanced Cardiac Care, Fortis Malar Chennai

Fortis Malar Hospital has set benchmarks in cardiac care with its path-breaking work over the past 20 years. Today, it is recognized all over the world as a centre of excellence providing the latest technology in Cardiac Bypass Surgery, Minimally Invasive Surgery, Interventional Cardiology, Non-invasive Cardiology, Paediatrics, Cardiology and Paediatrics Cardiac Surgery. Fortis Malar is one of the few hospitals in the country to offer specialized treatment in the field of Paediatrics Cardiology and Cardiac Surgery, Heart Transplant and Electrophysiology. The hospital offers outpatient ambulatory inotropic therapy for heart failure patients which help to reduce hospital admissions and cost.

About Fortis Healthcare Limited

Fortis Healthcare Limited is a leading integrated healthcare delivery service provider in India. The healthcare verticals of the company primarily comprise hospitals, diagnostics and day care speciality facilities. Currently, the company operates its healthcare delivery services in India, Singapore, Dubai, Mauritius and Sri Lanka with 66 healthcare facilities (including projects under development), over 10,000 potential beds and approx. 260 diagnostic centres.

For more information, please contact:

    Fortis Healthcare Ltd
    Priyam Bortamuli / P S Ramya Gourri            K2 Communications
    PR & Communications                            Sumit Jain / Vellaichamy R
    +91 98455 58559/ 89398 31218                   +91 98860 21715/ 98845 52209    

Media Contact: Raghu Kochar,, +91-9811617256, Senior Vice President Corporate Communications, Fortis Healthcare Limited

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