Son’s sacrifice for his mother makes history in Utah

May 9, 2019, 2:38 PM | Updated: 4:08 pm
Brandon and Gwen Finlayson before their surgery. (Photo: Intermountain Healthcare)....
Brandon and Gwen Finlayson before their surgery. (Photo: Intermountain Healthcare).
(Photo: Intermountain Healthcare)

MURRAY — A mother and son in Utah have made history after a life-saving transplant with the help of a 3D printer.

Gwen Finlayson had been suffering from autoimmune hepatitis for decades, which ultimately led to her requiring a new liver.

It took some convincing, but her son, Brandon, was able to persuade her to go and get tested in order to see if there was a possibility that he could donate part of his liver to her.

Mrs. Finlayson was worried about her son going under the knife, but they were a match, and she had been waiting on the transplant list for awhile.

The surgery, which took place back on February 6th, was the first successful adult-to-adult left liver lobe transplant between a living donor and a patient in Utah.

Dr.  Manuel Rodriguez-Davalos with Intermountain Healthcare says they used a 3D printer to make a model of Brandon’s liver that helped them plan the surgery.

“It’s not the same to see the image of someone [on] a screen than when you can hold [the model] and turn it and look at the angles that you’re going to be working on,” Rodriguez-Davalos said during today’s announcement of the surgery at Intermountain Medical Center in Murray.

Brandon Finlayson says it was a no-brainer to help his mom.

“It’s hard to watch people you love hurt and suffer. It’s hard to watch them for that long of a time. Once we learned that this was a possibility, it just felt like the right thing to do,” Finlayson said.

Both mom and son say they’re getting better every day and Brandon’s liver has mostly grown back.

There are about 113,000 Americans waiting to receive an organ donation, 13,000 of which, need a new liver.

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Son’s sacrifice for his mother makes history in Utah