The heart transplant service is part of the University's nationally recognized cardiomyopathy treatment program, providing compassionate, multidisciplinary care to patients before, during and after transplantation. The adult heart transplant survival rate has consistently been above the national average.
Over the past two decades, more than 200 adult patients have received heart transplants at UI Heart and Vascular Center. Members of the heart transplant team specialize in rare and life-threatening heart conditions, using their aggregate experience and knowledge to develop care plans that address each individual patient's particular needs. UI Hospitals and Clinics remains Iowa's only center for advanced heart therapy utilizing the latest in mechanical assist device therapy and heart transplant in addition to groundbreaking clinical trials.
Our team of specialists focuses on the total well-being of each patient before, during and after the transplant. This team includes internationally recognized members who play leadership roles in the United Network for Organ Sharing, the American Society of Transplant Physicians, and the Transplantation Society.
Our program offers many options to save or extend life during the pre-transplant period including:
- Ventricular assist devices (VAD) or heart pumps take over the function of a heart ventricle.
- Total Artificial Heart (TAH) replaces both failing heart ventricles, four heart valves, and pumps a high volume of blood to help vital organs recover faster.
- Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) is similar to a heart-lung machine and puts oxygen into the blood. The UI ECMO center is the only one in Iowa and one of the few programs in the nation. It is often crucial to the survival of pre-transplant patients.
Common indications for a heart transplant
- Severe heart failure despite medical management
- Severe, uncorrectable coronary artery disease
- Complex heart flutters (Arrhythmias)
- Cardiac tumor that can't be surgically removed
- Complex congenital heart disease