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Last Updated: Thursday, 28 June 2007, 09:44 GMT 10:44 UK
Heart transplant joy for baby Zoe
Zoe Chambers
Zoe was born with a heart valve which was too narrow
An 18-month-old girl who was at the top of a European heart transplant list after suffering six cardiac arrests has found a donor, doctors have confirmed.

Zoe Chambers, from Hull, had a heart transplant at Newcastle's Freeman Hospital early on Thursday.

A hospital spokeswoman said the transplant had gone quite well and Zoe was in a stable condition.

"We thank the donor family for thinking about another child during their sad time," she added.

The hospital said it would not be releasing details of the donor family.

Situation 'desperate'

Doctors said that Zoe, who was born with a heart valve which was too narrow, had only weeks to live unless she had a transplant.

A heart became available last week but it was decided it was too large.

Her situation was so desperate, she was put at the top of a European waiting list for a donor last weekend.

Paediatric intensive care consultant at Newcastle Freeman hospital Yam Thiru said at the time: "We are becoming more and more desperate for an organ to become available for her."

Her parents Rob and Julie have been keeping vigil with her at the Freeman Hospital, which is a leading transplant centre.

Private jet

Before the operation, her 33-year-old mother said: "She is desperate. She keeps getting infection after infection.

"She needs a transplant as soon as possible to give her the best chance."

It was unclear where the donor heart came from, but before the transplant hospital officials said Zoe's case was so serious that if a suitable organ was found anywhere in Europe it would be flown to Newcastle by private jet.

A hospital spokeswoman said on Thursday that Zoe's parents did not wish to comment on the operation.

Footage of Zoe before her operation

Baby tops heart transplant list
23 Jun 07 |  Humber

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