Heart Transplant

In some cases, a person's heart is too damaged or weak to respond to:

In these cases, surgeons at UPMC's Advanced Heart Failure Center recommend heart transplantation.

UPMC's Heart Transplant program, which began in 1980, is among the world's busiest. In all, we've performed more than 1,400 transplants, with longevity rates now beyond 30 years.

It's no wonder we're recognized the world over for excellence and experience in cardiac transplantation technique and care.

Who Can Benefit from a Heart Transplant?

People who rely on a ventricular assist device (VAD) for mechanical circulation often do so while waiting for a suitable donor heart to become available. For these people, we provide medical, technological, and social support until transplantation becomes possible. We then carefully match patients with donor organs.

Some people come to us for heart and lung transplantation surgery. For these people, we provide the same level of dedicated support and surgical excellence in a setting that addresses the complex needs of patients with multiple diagnoses.

UPMC is highly experienced in multivisceral transplants, such as:

  • Heart-lung
  • Heart-liver
  • Heart-lung-liver

A Focus on Outcomes

In any transplant surgery, sustainable immunosuppression is key.

Our researchers and faculty members have developed state-of-the-art strategies for weaning transplant patients off immunosuppressive drugs.

Our work in this area:

  • Decreases morbidity associated with the necessary level of immunosuppressive therapy required for a successful heart transplant.
  • Allow us to offer transplants to people who may not have met the recipient criteria in the past.

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