World’s longest surviving heart transplant patient celebrates 35 years since life-saving operation

A woman who is believed to be the world’s longest surviving heart transplant patient is celebrating 35 years since her life-saving operation.

Sandy Law, 62, was just 27 years old when she was given a new heart at Papworth Hospital near Cambridge in 1982.

She was given a second donor heart in 2005 after her first donor heart failed.

Mrs Law, who stays active managing a touring caravan site with her husband Terry, said she owed her life to medics at Papworth Hospital.

"When I think of the extra years I’ve had because of the skill and dedication of staff at Papworth, I do realise how lucky I am - especially to have had not one, but two donor hearts," she said.

"It makes you live for the day and gives you such a positive outlook."

Mrs Law had inherited severe heart failure from her mother, who died aged 39, and she grew up with a life expectancy of 35.

The 35th anniversary of her first heart transplant operation was on November 22, 2017.

Consultant surgeon Steven Tsui, who conducted Mrs Law’s second heart transplant operation at Papworth Hospital, said: "We are delighted that Sandy has done so well, and has gained 35 years of life since her first heart transplant at Papworth.

"She is particularly lucky to have received two heart transplants - of the more than 1,400 patients who have had a heart transplant at Papworth, only 32 have been suitable for a second transplant.

"We hope that Sandy will continue to enjoy life and remain well for many years to come."

More in this Section

Investigation after elderly yellow vest protester injured in Nice

US lawmakers await details of Mueller's Russia report

German family to donate millions after hearing extent of Nazi past

Nicola Sturgeon: UK Government has no credible way forward


Seven blissful places to go on a mother-daughter date this weekend

Appliance of Science: Why do we age?

Why anis don’t put all eggs in one basket

The song thrush gets in tune for the upcoming dawn chorus

More From The Irish Examiner