Published on March 28th, 2012 | by Kim LaCapria0
Dick Cheney’s New Heart Might Make Him a Nicer Dude, Docs Say
When it was revealed that Dick Cheney received a new heart over the weekend after suffering from long-term heart issues, it was like comedy writers everywhere got to take at least a day off.
Among other things, Cheney- a man who is perhaps most notable for shooting an old man in the face with buckshot and somehow getting the bullet-riddled guy to apologize to him– was not known for his warm fuzziness when he played second banana to George Bush. “Stern” is probably one of the friendlier terms you could use to describe the former veep, but a personality change following a transplant seems to be the stuff of urban legends and slapstick comedies.
It is, however, possible that a transplanted organ can affect a change in personality, docs say- although whether Cheney received an empathy transplant in the process remains to be seen. UCLA heart transplant center’s chief Mario Deng explains that it’s not unheard of for heart recipients to have a metaphorical change of heart after the procedure:
“There are experiences where patients who undergo the procedure, just because it is such an existential procedure, have a different appreciation of the small things in life, and a certain sensitivity they haven’t had before.”
Deng says of viewpoint changes following heart transplants like Dick Cheney’s: “you cannot predict what is going to happen.”