Transplant team drops heart on way to hospital (VIDEO)


medics, mexico city, drop heart, transplant

(CBS) In urgent medical situations, there's always a risk that frenzied professionals may drop the ball. When rushing to a Mexico City hospital for a transplant, some medics did just that - by dropping a human heart.

For the life-saving operation, a helicopter was used to deliver the heart in "a rapid, precision maneuver," Mexico City police told the Associated Press.

But after exiting the chopper, a medic stumbled, and the plastic-wrapped heart tumbled out of a cooler and onto the street.

The medic immediately returned the heart to the cooler and brought it to the hospital where the recipient was waiting. Doctors proceeded with the surgery, which was reportedly a success. The patient is responding well to the new heart, although doctors said they must wait 72 hours to be sure.

Did the drop affect the heart? The doctor in charge of the operation was not too concerned, The Telegraph reports. "It was a trip on one of the potholes on the road. Its arrival was a bit scary but fortunately it all went well. Because we had the heart perfectly protected as it was packed in three layers," he said.

Dr. Stephen Bartlett, chairman of surgery at the University of Maryland School of Medicine, told ABC News it's unlikely the drop had any significant impact beyond embarrassing the medics because of the multiple sterile layers around the organ and close proximity to the hospital.

Reporters were around after the helicopter landed to document the delivery, resulting the a video of the mishap (below).

"No harm done, but this will stay on Youtube for a while," Bartlett said.



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