DURHAM, N.C. — A North Carolina teen has a new heart after a first-of-its kind surgery at Duke University Hospital.
Jaynzra Rice, 14, got her new heart August 31. She's the first pediatric patient in the country to get a transplant through something called "donation after circulatory death."
That means doctors took the heart quickly from its donor and it maintained pumping action throughout the transplant process. Surgeons received special approval from the FDA to be able to use the technology.
"I was able to walk out very pleased and I was able to tell her mom that I was very optimistic and I thought she would be in good shape moving forward," Dr. Nick Andersen said.
"I felt happy. I felt relieved and I always go back to just being blessed. God has really taken care of my child during this whole process," Brandaline Rice said about her daughter’s procedure.
She also says her daughter is recovering nicely in the hospital and is doing therapy daily as she adjusts to her new heart.