Saint Luke's cardiac transplant program gives patients a second chance at life
Like most men with robust lives, Robert Minton took his health for granted. His most serious health problem had been knee surgery caused by years of playing basketball with his buddies. Then Minton learned his heart was failing. Doctors initially diagnosed pneumonia, but Saint Luke's uncovered the real culprit: cardiomyopathy, which inflames the heart and slows its pumping power.
The disease progressed and seven years later, Minton received a heart transplant at Saint Luke's Mid America Heart Institute. "New heart. New man," Minton said. "I left that hospital feeling stronger and breathing clearer than I had in years."
First in the Nation
Minton waited only 38 days for a matching heart at Saint Luke's. Some 80 percent of Saint Luke's patients receive a suitable donor match in less than six months, compared with the national average of 30 percent. At the Heart Institute, patient care is backed by more experience than any other heart hospital in the world. Its patients have access to the nation's leading cardiologists, research trials testing the latest drugs and therapies—and the region's first and only heart transplant program.
Like many patients, Minton left Saint Luke's with an overwhelming sense of gratitude. "I am living testimony to the generosity of strangers," he said.