EUROPE'S longest surviving heart and lung transplant patient has died, doctors announced yesterday.
Brenda Barber, 47, from Walworth, south London - who was the first patient to have the operation at Papworth Hospital, Cambridge, in 1984 - died on Wednesday night in the hospital's surgical unit from heart problems.
John Wallwork, the surgeon who carried out the pioneering operation, described his patient, who celebrated the 10th anniversary of her transplant in April, as 'a very brave lady'.
He added: 'Knowing she had no alternative, she agreed to undergo a heart and lung transplant when that programme was in its infancy. We had no idea at the time that the operation would give Brenda an extra 10 happy years.
'She had an excellent quality of life in those years, including returning to work as a school supervisor, and will be remembered fondly as a lady of great determination.
'Many subsequent heart and lung transplant patients have benefited from those pioneering years of the transplant programme.
'Our deepest sympathies go to her family.'Reuse content