Dr. Catherine Kling detaches the donor liver from the warm-preservation device in which it had traveled.

The HuddleBrian Donohue

Surgeons at UW Medicine in Seattle have performed the first liver transplant in the Pacific Northwest involving a warm blood-perfusion device to transport the organ between donor and recipient.

Paul A. Hamilton, 47, of Seattle, received the organ in an eight-hour procedure Nov. 19 at University of Washington Medical Center. He is scheduled to be discharged from the hospital tomorrow after experiencing what one of his surgeons characterized as a “remarkable” early recovery.

“I’ve seen so many patients the day after transplant – 30 years’ worth – and I can’t remember such favorable initial signs,” said Dr. Jorge Reyes, the hospital’s chief of transplant surgery. He attributed Hamilton’s positive results, in part, to the transport device, which circulates blood and nutrients at normal body temperature through the liver between recovery from the donor and transplant into the recipient. Read more >>