Michael Wagner, daughter Phuoc undergo successful liver transplant

Doctors say two surgeries in Toronto that allowed a Kingston, Ont., man to donate a portion of his liver to one of his three-year-old twin daughters were successful. The other twin daughter is still waiting for a suitable organ donation.

1 twin daughter still in need of liver donation

Binh Wagner, left, could die if she doesn't receive a liver donation, as her sister Phuoc did. Their father has already donated a portion of his liver to Phuoc in surgeries performed in Toronto. (Wagner family/Canadian Press)

Surgeries in Toronto that allowed a Kingston, Ont., man to donate a portion of his liver to one of his three-year-old twin daughters were successful, doctors said today.

Michael Wagner and his daughter Phuoc underwent surgeries at separate hospitals. Phuoc and twin sister Binh, who is still awaiting a liver donation, have Alagille syndrome — a genetic disorder that affects organ function. 

Wagner's donation surgery was performed at Toronto General Hospital, while Phuoc received the portion of her dad's liver at the Hospital for Sick Children. 

The two surgeries took a combined 13 hours, doctors said in a release Wednesday morning. 

Wagner is in good condition and recovering at Toronto General, while Phuoc is in fair condition at the Hospital for Sick Children, which means the "patient may be uncomfortable or have minor complications," but the patient has a "favourable outlook," according to the hospitals.

Three-year-old Phuoc Wagner's portion of the liver transplant surgery was performed at the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto. (Wagner family/Facebook)
Doctors decided which of the twins would receive the liver transplant from their father after the family said it could not make the heart-wrenching decision.

Without a transplant, Binh could die. 

Gary Levy, who runs the liver donor program at Toronto General, said Tuesday that donors can give up to 70 per cent of their livers, which will regrow to full size, but that a living donor can only donate once.

The family made international headlines after their pleas for potential donors to come forward garnered considerable attention on social media. 

A post on the family Facebook page late Tuesday said Phuoc's new liver "looks great," but noted the next few days will be "critical."

"I could not have asked for a better way to end this long day. I am the luckiest," read a message on the Facebook page, which is managed by the girls' mother, Johanne Wagner.

Doctors said that photos of the surgeries will be provided at a news conference Thursday starting at 11 a.m. ET. 

With files from The Canadian Press


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