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Hello. My wife passed away three years ago.It was rally huge shock for me because she was really healthy. She just passed away in her sleep. After the funeral I had small heart attack and after that one, a few months ago, I had really strong one that caused permanent damage to my heart. The condition is really seriously and my doctor is suggesting me to have heart transplantation. I am  65 years old and he told me that I will live with new heart for more than 10 years. But I am scared. I don't know is it worth of it. Can you tell me what is heart transplantation success rates and should I go with it?

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Good day there.

It is very hard to tell because very patient is its own story and it can be different a lot. But it is definitely that you need to think about this very well. It is complicated surgery and you can have some side - effects after it. But the good thing is that medicine is really improved in the past decades so survival among cardiac transplant recipients has improved as a result of improvements in the treatments that suppress the immune system and prevent some possible infection.So if your current condition is that serious, you should really think a lot about it.

Good luck! 

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Well, I'm afraid that age is one of the risk factors here, Guest. The older you are, the lesser the chances that you are going to be okay after the heart transplantation is done and that you are going to make through the operation.

Most younger people who receive a heart transplant enjoy a high quality of life. They can return to work within three to six months of a heart transplant and have few activity restrictions.

Recipient survival rates vary based on a number of factors. For example, in the U.S. the overall survival rate is about 88 percent after one year and about 75 percent after five years.

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Heart transplants aren't successful for everyone. Your new heart may fail because of organ rejection or because of the development of valvular heart disease or coronary artery disease. Should this happen, your doctor may recommend adjusting your medications or in more extreme cases, another heart transplant.

In some cases, additional treatment options are limited and you may choose to stop treatment. Discussions with your heart transplant team, doctor and family should address your expectations and preferences for treatment, emergency care and end-of-life care.

But like Stradivarius said, age is really of matter here. But if this is your only option, then you should go for it.
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Hi Guest,

I can tell you this, even if the procedure goes as planned and everything turns out to be okay, recovery process is going to be hard. It is very hard for younger people, not to mention how hard can it then bee for older people.

Your doctor maybe already told you about cardiac rehabilitation program, if not, he is definitely going to talk to you about it. I suggest that you do what he says and that you undergo this program. It is going to help you get back on your feet after the procedure is done and it might take a couple of months.

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I had some experience with cardiac rehabilitation and I have to say that it is definitely a good option.

I had a heart bypass surgery and it took me half a year to get better. This is of course, with the help of cardiac rehab program. If it wasn't for this program and the people there, I wonder if I would have ever gotten back to how I used to be and how I am today. These people are going to show you how to exercise, they are going to teach you about the diet you should be on, they are going to tell you everything that you need to know if you want to get better faster.

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Hi there. That was exactly what I was afraid of. And somehow I knew that this operation is not successful for everyone. Today I was chatting with some guy who had heart transplantation and he told me that now he is feeling ok. But he told me that after the operation he needed a lot of time to recover. That is what scares me because I am pretty much older and he is younger than me. So I am scared that I won't be able to handle with this. Maybe I am telling this because I am scared but I can't help it. Tnx for any advice!

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Hello there. I totally understand your concern about this. It is a little bit harder when the person is older, the complications and risks are much bigger than in younger person. Like somebody already told you, it depends will this operation be successfully or not. It is true that after heart transplantation you can change your behavior completely, you can change your personality and that is something that you need to be prepared to. The age is the biggest risk for you and you should know that. If you decide to have it, I really hope that procedure will be done properly. 

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