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The doctor who made history

September 23, 2011

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Dr. Bangash said that he will continue to work on more transplant procedures in October and hopes to begin pediatric transplantation next year. – Photo by Hussain Afzal / Dawn.com

KARACHI: Dr. Tariq Ali Bangash who directed Pakistan’s first successful cadaver liver transplant at Sheikh Zayed Hospital Lahore shares his experiences regarding the historic achievement.

The inspiring lecture was organised by Sindh Institute of Urology and Transplantation (SIUT). Dr. Bangash said that Dr. Adeeb Rizvi has always been his inspiration and his father always encouraged him to be like Dr. Rizvi and nothing else. He said that Dr. Rizvi also did the homework of the first cadaver liver transplant in Pakistan.

The cadaveric liver transplant is a process in which the liver of a deceased person is transferred into a patient. In this case, the liver was donated by Mohammad Arsalan, a 16-year-old matriculation student from Lahore. Arsalan had been wounded and was admitted to the hospital three days before the transplantation and had asked his parents to donate his liver in the case of his death.

On August 13, 2011, Pakistani media highlighted the first successful attempt of a liver transplant. A team of professionals led by Dr. Bangash retrieved the liver at 3:30 pm; the transplant process started at 9:00 pm and finished the process at 5:00 am.

Dr. Bangash said that the liver was donated to Amir Raza – a 40-year-old businessman from Sialkot. “He showed signs of rocky progress after the transplantation and after five or six days, the patient was released from the ICU and is now back at work,” Bangash added.

From Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to Leeds

Dr. Bangash belongs to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and did his MBBS in 1996. He then worked with nine experts on nine different liver transplantation approaches in Leeds UK, which is now the largest transplant center in Europe, receiving up to 450 liver recipients a year.

The doctors and paramedics at SIUT at the lecture of Dr. Tariq Ali Bangash. – Photo by Hussain Afzal / Dawn.com

Two years ago, Dr.Bangash joined the Sheikh Zayed Hospital in Lahore.

He said that the waiting list is increasing as the organ shortage is getting worse every year.

“On the other hand, transplantation of complex organs – such as liver – need huge resources and expertise; it is teamwork of a variety of professionals including nutritionists, pharmacists and even social workers,” he added.

Dr. Bangash said that he will continue to work on more transplant procedures in October and hopes to begin pediatric transplantation next year.

Responding to a question Dawn.com asked regarding his return to Pakistan despite the country’s harsh situation, he said that we should remain hopeful about our country and its future.

“There are so many Pakistani professionals around the world who are willing to return to the country and soon they will,” he added.