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Heart Transplantation

The University of Michigan Cardiac Transplant Program is the leading cardiac transplant center in Michigan, performing over 30 cardiac transplants a year under the surgical and medical leadership of Dr. Francis Pagani and Dr. Keith Aaronson, respectively.  The Cardiovascular Center has three adult cardiac transplant surgeons and seven heart failure and transplant cardiologists with advanced training in managing the complexities of this patient population.   Because the University of Michigan is a high volume transplant center, we afford the multidisciplinary care required for the complex transplant patient, encompassing specialists in advanced circulatory support, cardiac critical care, nutrition, social work, congenital heart disease, inherited cardiomyopathies, and transplant infectious disease.  We also enroll all patients under the care of a University of Michigan cardiac transplant specialist into our post-transplant telemanagement program.  As a result of this multidisciplinary approach, University of Michigan Cardiac Transplant Program boasts a 93% three year post transplant survival, compared to an expected survival of 79%.

Survival following cardiac transplant relies on center experience and rapid access to mechanical support systems that can help stabilize the failing heart and other organs during the transplant evaluation process.  Our Center for Circulatory Support, under the same leadership, specializes in the use of a broad array of temporary or permanent circulatory support systems that can help stabilize an individual’s right and/or left heart during cardiac shock.  Drs. Pagani and Aaronson have been national leaders in evaluating left ventricular assist devices (LVADs) as both bridges to transplantation and as permanent therapy in landmark clinical trials.  We have implanted over 300 LVADs through 2009, with one of the lowest postoperative LVAD mortalities in the nation. We are justifiably proud that our heart transplant and circulatory support services, in the true Michigan spirit, are among the Leaders and Best.