Overcoming rejection. Renowned transplant surgeon & heart transplant recipient, Dr. Robert Montgomery.

Name: Robert Montgomery, MD

Specialty: General Surgery. Transplant Surgeon.

Location: NYU Langone Transplant Institute. New York City.

Imagine losing your father at 14, losing your brother a decade later, and looking down the barrel of the same heritable heart condition that killed them both. Imagine learning in your first year of surgical residency that your continued existence will depend a new implantable device, called an ICD. A device so new, you will likely be the first surgeon in the world to have one implanted. A device that will allow your life to continue, but most likely put an end to your surgical career.

That’s exactly what happened to today’s guest, one of the nation’s renowned transplant surgeons, Dr. Robert Montgomery. Robert has performed over 1000 kidney transplants and his research has advanced the field in areas such as desensitization, multiple organ transplants, gene and cell-based therapies, and perhaps most famously, domino paired donations. And if that’s not enough, he is also credited in the Guinness Book of World Records for most kidney transplants performed in one day.

One more thing…Robert is also heart transplant recipient. A heart transplant performed by the very surgical team he hired, and currently leads as the director of the Langone Transplant Institute at NYU. Wondering about the Ave Maria intro music? Well, that’s Robert’s wife, world famous mezzo-soprano, Denyce Graves. Get ready for a wild journey of an episode. With said, let’s get started.

Links and Resources:

Dr. Robert Montgomery: https://nyulangone.org/doctors/1467404137/robert-montgomery

Essay by Dr. Montgomery: https://leapsmag.com/the-stunning-comeback-of-a-top-transplant-surgeon-who-got-a-new-heart-at-his-own-hospital/

Ethics of living donor procedures: https://journalofethics.ama-assn.org/article/limits-altruism-selecting-living-donors/2012-03

The ethics of the Global Kidney Exchange programme (Peter Singer): https://www.thelancet.com/pdfs/journals/lancet/PIIS0140-6736(19)32474-2.pdf

https://www.organdonor.gov/statistics-stories/statistics.html

https://optn.transplant.hrsa.gov/

https://optn.transplant.hrsa.gov/learn/about-transplantation/donor-matching-system/ Denyce Graves: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WjVGtDr3qqA

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