A first in the world: three siblings living in Konya (city of Turkey), suffering from the same disease, have been saved thanks to a liver transplant and by-pass surgery.
Merve (14), Buket (13) and Adem (9) were diagnosed with “Familia Hypercholesterolaemia”. In other words, this disease is an inherited condition in which cholesterol is at a high level than normal in the blood.
The siblings’ parents were sadly frustrated after learning their children suffered this one-in-a million rare disease. As their cholesterol level was over 1000, they could die from a heart attack.
Doctors had no doubt: “if they don’t undergo any treatment, they will run the risk of dying.”
In 2002, the parents tried to find a solution to their nightmare in Konya. Later on, they followed their fight in the Ankara University Hospital. As the medical treatment did not show any improvement, there was no choice but to perform liver transplantation. The next step of their long fight against their children’s disease was to go to Istanbul.
After an examination of the three siblings, world-renowned Memorial Hospital’s transplant surgeon Prof. Dr. Münci Kalayoğlu and Prof. Dr. Koray Acarlı confirmed the alarming urgency of transplantation.
The siblings’ donors were their uncles and cousins. Adem and Buket were the first to undergo the operation. Their sister, Merve, underwent the surgery only two months later as she had to have an open-heart operation first.
All the surgeries were a success! “The patients and the donors are all good.” This was an excellent news for both the parents and doctors. Indeed, the children’s cholesterol levels that were over 1000 decreased significantly.
According to Prof. Dr. Kalayoğlu and his team, the only way to save the siblings’ lives was to do transplantation.
“The problem was the liver. A new liver for each of them saved their lives.” “To make organ transplantation possible, organ donation is a must. If there is no organ, there is no transplantation and without transplantation, death is the destiny.” Prof. Dr. Kalayoğlu said.