Since 1977, the cardiac transplantation program at Columbia has performed 1,137 heart transplant operations with a current one-year survival rate of approximately 90% and a 5-year survival rate of approximately 75% representing the largest single institution experience in North America. Over 2 decades of experience in the selection of donors and recipients has permitted us to expand eligibility limits and relax conventional exclusion criteria allowing us to transplant high-risk donors and medically complex recipients with excellent results. Recipient characteristics, rather than those of the donor, substantially impact outcome following OHT and use of extended donors will improve allocation of donor organs particularly with marginal recipients. During the 2-decade long evolution in our transplant experience, substantial improvements have been made in the areas of immunosuppression, treatment of rejection, and handling of sensitized recipients. Frequent causes of late mortality such as graft rejection, infection, malignancy, and TCAD, have been significantly diminished in the modern area of immune manipulation but remain major causes of death and barriers to long-term survival. The single biggest impediment to growth in OHT is the shortage of donor organs. We have attempted to address this issue by identifying patients who may be better served with a bridging surgical procedure such as a mechanical assist device, or alternative procedures such as transmyocardial laser revascularization, high-risk reparative surgery, or myocardial volume reduction operations. Ongoing research interests at Columbia including LVADs, immunologic sensitization, xenotransplantation, and vasculogenesis offer the potential for continued growth for treatment of end-stage heart disease into the next millennium.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||13|
|State||Published - 1999|