Save a Child’s Heart doctor saves a COVID-19 life.

May 10, 2020 by J-Wire Newsdesk
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Shimon Sasson was admitted to Wolfson Medical Centre in Holon, Israel over a month ago in critical condition with COVID-19.

Dr Hagi Dekel operating

He was connected to an ECMO machine which kept him alive for 29 days.

During this whole time Dr Hagi Dekel, one of the leading surgeons of Save a Child’s Heart and head of the ECMO machine at Wolfson, and his team, fought for the life of local-resident 45-yr-old Sasson treating him day and night.

“The ECMO machine was created to support patients whose hearts and lungs cannot function. We connect the patient to the ECMO machine which basically performs the breathing process for them. Thanks to our work with the Save a Child’s Heart patients for the past 25 years, we have expertise in this field and Wolfson is today one of the leading hospitals in this field” said Dr Dekel.

Dr Hagi Dekel

Dr Dekel, today the Director of the Cardiothoracic Surgery Department at Wolfson, was sent by Save a Child’s Heart to Toronto in 2013 for a two-year fellowship in in cardiac surgery at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Center and SickKids Hospital.

Upon his return to Israel as a fully-qualified pediatric heart surgeon, Dr Dekel established the ECMO unit at Wolfson and since then dozens of Israelis as well as Save a Child’s Heart patients from around the world were saved thanks to the work of De Dekel and his team.

Note: Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO), also known as extracorporeal life support (ECLS), is an extracorporeal technique of providing prolonged cardiac and respiratory support to persons whose heart and lungs are unable to provide an adequate amount of gas exchange or perfusion to sustain life.


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