The work of a transplant anesthesia team is to provide specialized care for adults and pediatric patients undergoing liver, kidney and pancreas transplantations. In the case of living donor liver transplantations (involving a kidney or part of a liver donated by relatives or other altruistic donors), we provide perioperative care for both donor and recipient. All our attending physicians have received extensive training in this field and we provide evidence based care using state-of-the-art procedures. We are involved in the pre-intra and postoperative management of transplant patients. Our team works together with the surgical transplant and intensive care teams to ensure the continuity of patient care.
Does the transplant patient meet with the transplant anesthesia team before the transplant operation?
Is special training required to provide anesthesia for a transplant procedure?
How long does a transplant operation take?
Does a patient lose a lot of blood during a transplant operation?
Patients undergoing an organ transplant very frequently need transfusions of blood and blood products (for example, plasma). Liver transplant recipients, especially, very often need transfusions due to compromised coagulation. Currently, blood products undergo very strict controls by blood banks to rule out possible infections. The risk for blood transmitted diseases or a transfusion of mismatched blood products is absolutely minimal.
How long after the transplant operation will the patient wake up from anesthesia?
Depending on the situation, the patient is sometimes woken up immediately after surgery while still in the operating room. In other cases, the patient is taken to the post-anesthesia care unit (PACU) or intensive care unit (ICU), where they are closely monitored and woken from anesthesia. The patient will stay on monitors in the PACU or ICU until they are stable, at which time they are transferred to a regular hospital room.
How is postoperative pain managed for a transplant recipient or donor?
Immediately following the operation, the staff in the post-anesthesia care unit (PACU) monitors the patient’s pain. They provide the treatment necessary to insure that the patient is as comfortable as possible. Once the patient is transferred from the PACU to a hospital room, the nurses and the Anesthesia Acute Pain Management Team monitor the patient closely to provide pain medication as needed. If the patient is transferred from the operating room directly to the intensive care unit (ICU), the ICU team provides pain management.
Is it possible to use an epidural catheter for pain relief after transplantation?