UMMC performs pancreas-kidney transplant - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

UMMC performs pancreas-kidney transplant

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JACKSON, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

The University of Mississippi Medical Center has performed a successful pancreas-kidney transplant.

The 49-year old Mississippi man had suffered from type 1 diabetes since age 9 and is now essentially cured.

The milestone operation marks the completion of the UMMC abdominal transplant program, which can now provide kidney, liver and pancreas transplants while keeping Mississippians close to home.

"They said I could get a kidney and a pancreas transplant. I jumped at the chance," said patient Paul Davis.

Davis is all smiles just one week after the life-changing surgery, he never thought he'd have.

"We did the procedure not only to cure his renal failure/treat his renal failure with the kidney transplant but also the pancreas to produce insulin and essentially cure his type one diabetes since his own pancreas does not produce insulin," said Davis.

Davis had one of the most life threatening complications, he was unable to recognize that his blood sugar was dropping.

"When we went to call him in for this transplant, we tried to get a hold of him and could not and got a hold of his sister who then went to his house and found him basically on the floor, passed out with a blood sugar of 30," said Dr. Mark Earl.

Within hours Davis was at UMMC, becoming the first patient in Mississippi to have a pancreas transplant.

"This will have not only a life prolonging impact but also a significant quality of life benefit as well," said Earl.

The symptoms of Davis' low blood sugar made officers think he was drunk. That's why he has this permanent stamp of his now-former disease.

"The cops like breaking my necklace when I had my medic alert necklace. They would break my necklace, give me my chain back. We didn't see your emblem. so, they cannot break that off," Davis explained.

He'll get the tattoo covered eventually and start living life as a new that can enjoy the little things we sometimes take for granted this time of year...like "a piece of pie".

It's the first time that five organs, all from one donor, were used for transplants at UMMC.

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