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Heart Center | The Transplant Procedure

When a compatible organ becomes available, the transplant patient is immediately contacted by a transplant coordinator or transplant surgeon and admitted to the hospital.


At this time, a history is taken of any medical events, which may have occurred since initial transplant evaluation. All appropriate testing is also done to ensure the patient’s readiness for surgery.

The surgery lasts approximately five to eight hours. When the surgery is completed, the patient is transferred to the Cardiac Intensive Care Unit. Once stable, the patient is transferred to the transplant patient care unit on North 11.

The average length of stay in the ICU is 3-7 days. The average total length of stay in the hospital is 2-3 weeks.

Careful, comprehensive post-surgical monitoring constantly evaluates whether the body is accepting the new organ. Patient education is a major focus of the post transplant care. Patients must understand their medical regimen and be responsible for their follow-up care.

Also in This Section

Are You a Candidate?

In general, patients with advance heart failure, or on maximal medical therapy, should be considered for transplant evaluation.

The Transplant Procedure

When a compatible organ becomes available, the transplant patient is immediately contacted by a transplant coordinator or transplant surgeon and admitted to the hospital.

Going Home

Follow-up care initially involves returning to the Hartford Transplant Associates’ office several times per week during the first month after leaving the hospital.

Heart Transplant in Perspective

In December, 1967, Dr. Christiaan Barnard successfully transplanted a heart from a young head trauma victim into a dying fifty-four-year-old man with ischemic cardiomyopathy.

The Transplant Procedure