A 20-year-old Chinese University student, who underwent urgent heart transplant surgery two months ago after suffering from a severe form of myocarditis, died on Tuesday night.
A spokeswoman from Queen Mary Hospital confirmed that second-year anthropology student Ma Cheuk-long died at around 10pm due to multiple organ failure.
“The parents, the family and my team are devastated by this bad outcome,” Dr Timmy Au Wing-kuk, chief of the hospital’s Cardiothoracic Surgery Department, told the Poston Wednesday morning.
He said Ma’s parents would not want medical staff to comment further and asked for the public to show their understanding.
Ma received a new heart on June 19 after an emotional appeal from his family and girlfriend for a donation.
His condition briefly appeared to be improving after the surgery, but worsened again in July after he suffered an infection.
Previously, he had been kept alive by an artificial heart and lung machine in the Cardiothoracic Intensive Care Unit at Queen Mary Hospital in Pok Fu Lam.
Ma, a music-lover, was diagnosed with myocarditis – a heart inflammation – in May. The condition is a viral inflammation of the heart muscle that weakens its function. The condition later developed into terminal heart failure.
Professor Henry Wong Nai-ching, head of the Chinese University’s New Asia College – where Ma was a student – had made repeated public appeals for prayers throughout his treatment.
Doctors said Ma’s condition was rare. Inflammation happened mostly to young people, but up to 95 per cent of sufferers would recover eventually.
Ma underwent heart transplant surgery at Queen Mary Hospital after the organ from a recently deceased 50-year-old female patient at Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Yau Ma Tei was delivered.