Heart Transplantation

Heart Transplantation

  • Treatment of choice for patients with refractory end-stage HF, inoperable CAD, and cardiomyopathy
    • 3,000 on list; average 2,000 available
    • Survival rate of 85%-90% at 1year; 75% at 3
  • Selection process identifies patients who would most benefit from a new heart 
  • Candidates must undergo physical, diagnostic, and psychologic evaluation
  • Transplant candidates are placed on a list
    • Stable patients wait at home and receive ongoing medical care
    • Unstable patients may require hospitalization for more intensive therapy
    • Overall waiting period for a heart is long; many patients die during this time
  • Heart retrieval first step
  • Second step is removal of recipient’s heart except for portions of atria (2 different approaches) and venous connections
  • Final step is implantation of donor heart