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Patient Marc Lestinsky was diagnosed with heart failure in 2014 as a long-term side effect of chemotherapy for non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma he had as a child. On his 45th birthday, he underwent a successful heart transplant at Northwestern Memorial Hospital.
For STS member Dr. Duc Thinh Pham, Lestinsky’s surgeon and surgical director of the Advanced Heart Failure Center at Northwestern Medicine, heart transplants are always special. He said there are only about 3,000 heart transplants done in the United States each year but estimated the odds of someone getting a heart on their birthday at “probably one in a million.”