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A 24-year-old member asked:

Can you get a pigs heart transplanted into a human?

2 doctor answers3 doctors weighed in
Dr. Ankush Bansal
Internal Medicine 16 years experience
Yes & No: Hearts from pigs used to be transplanted into some patients years ago but not much anymore. There is too much risk from rejection, the need for a lot more meds than from a human transplant, and potential viral transmission. However, heart valves from pigs & cows are transplanted into some patients (the other type of valve being metal).
Created for people with ongoing healthcare needs but benefits everyone.
Dr. Stuart Flechner
Urology 48 years experience
Not today: Using animal organs for transplant, xenotransplantation, is a future consideration once the rejection barrier is better understood and controlled. There is ongoing work using porcine organs placed into primates, since they are close to human in tissue structure . An intriguing possibility is genetically engineering donor animals so that they will be less prone to trigger human immune responses.
Created for people with ongoing healthcare needs but benefits everyone.

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Last updated May 25, 2012

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