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A hard sell: Heart transplantation in Japan

patient
The death of Japan's first heart transplant patient over 30 years ago stigmatized the procedure.
VIDEO
CNN's
Windows Media 28K 80K

September 20, 1999
Web posted at: 5:04 p.m. EDT (2104 GMT)

(CNN) -- Thirty-one years ago, a landmark heart transplant was performed in Japan. The recipient died and the procedure was stigmatized for years to come.

"Confusionism teaches us that we should keep our body intact even after death because our body is a gift from our parents, it's a gift from our ancestors," says Dr. Akihiko of the Heart Institute of Japan.

But attitudes are slowing changing, and three heart transplants have been performed this year. Medical Correspondent Dr. Steve Salvatore reports.



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RELATED SITES:
Advanced Medical Treatments and Medical Controversies in Japan
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