Total Artificial Heart Patient Enjoys Spotlight as
"The Only Man in Turkey Who Lives Without a Heart"
Omer Bayrak Takes Stage During Total Artificial Heart Session
at Turkish Society for Artificial Organs and Support Systems Meeting
TUCSON, Ariz. – Sept. 29, 2011 – In May 2011, Omer Bayrak made headlines when he became the first patient in Turkey to be discharged from the hospital using the Freedom® portable driver to power his SynCardia temporary Total Artificial Heart. Since returning home to wait for a matching donor heart, Mr. Bayrak has been enjoying his new-found celebrity as "the only man in Turkey who lives without a heart."
On Sept. 17, after almost 180 days of support with SynCardia's Total Artificial Heart, Mr. Bayrak attended the annual meeting of the Turkish Society for Artificial Organs and Support Systems (TUYOD). During a session about the Total Artificial Heart, he was invited to the stage and the audience asked him several questions. He responded that he was "doing really well and very comfortable with SynCardia's Total Artificial Heart." He also added that he is continuing his daily life with very few limitations, and has returned to work.
Mr. Bayrak is also currently featured on an eight-story tall billboard on Florence Nightingale Hospital in Istanbul. In English, the billboard reads, "The only man in Turkey who lives without a heart but with an artificial heart. Florence Nightingale Heart Transplant and Total Artificial Heart Center."
Prior to receiving SynCardia's Total Artificial Heart, Mr. Bayrak had been suffering from congestive heart failure since 2001. Four years ago, he underwent cardiac resynchronization therapy and received an implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD). Last year, he was hospitalized 11 times for inotropic support.
For 15 days prior to receiving SynCardia's Total Artificial Heart, Mr. Bayrak had been in the cardiac intensive care unit. He was on the urgent list for heart transplantation but his cardiac function continued to worsen. As a result, on March 21, 2011, he became the hospital's first patient to receive SynCardia's Total Artificial Heart.
Three months later, on May 20, 2011, Mr. Bayrak was discharged from the hospital to wait for a matching donor heart at home using the Freedom portable driver, the world's first wearable power supply for SynCardia's Total Artificial Heart. The Freedom portable driver is CE approved for use in Europe and undergoing an FDA-approved Investigational Device Exemption (IDE) clinical study in the U.S.
SynCardia recognizes and thanks Ufuk Yaranli and Natura Medikal Urunler Ltd., the Turkish distributor for the Total Artificial Heart, for their commitment and on-going support of Florence Nightingale Hospital.
CAUTION – The Freedom® portable driver is an investigational device, limited by United States law to investigational use.
SynCardia Systems, Inc. in Tucson, Arizona is the privately-held owner and manufacturer of the world's first and only FDA, Health Canada and CE approved Total Artificial Heart for use as a bridge to transplant for people suffering from end-stage biventricular heart failure in which both ventricles can no longer pump enough blood for a person to survive.
More than 1,350 implants of the SynCardia Total Artificial Heart account for over 400 patient years of life on the device. Since January 2010 more than 550 SynCardia Hearts have been implanted.
The youngest patient to receive a SynCardia Heart was 9 years old; the oldest was 76 years old. The longest a patient has lived with a SynCardia Heart was nearly four years (1,374 days) before receiving a successful donor heart transplant Sept. 11, 2011.
SynCardia Systems also manufactures the Freedom® portable driver, which powers the SynCardia Heart while allowing clinically stable patients to be discharged the hospital to live at home and in their communities. The wearable Freedom driver has been used by more than 200 patients, accounting for over 120 years of support