Heart Transplant Program Overview

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At the Heart Transplant Program at Boston Children’s Hospital, we evaluate infants, children and adolescents who are potential candidates for heart transplantations. Comprised of clinicians from both the Pediatric Transplant Center and the hospital's #1 ranked Heart Center, we specialize in caring for children with end-stage heart disease. Since the program’s inception in 1986, we have performed more than 260 heart transplants.

Betsy Blume, MD – Medical Director, Heart Transplant Program

Key highlights

  • Ranked No. 1 in the country by U.S.News & World Report

  • Close collaboration with the Interventional Catheterization Program

  • A leader in research and regulatory issues surrounding ventricular assist devices used in the United States

Our expertise

The Heart Transplant Program at Children’s Hospital Boston is one of the largest pediatric heart transplant centers in the country. Our multidisciplinary team is made up of:

  • cardiac surgeonsHeart Transplant Staff
  • cardiac anesthesiologists
  • cardiologists
  • advanced practice nurses
  • physical therapists
  • cardiac pathologists
  • infectious disease specialists
  • nutritionists
  • transplant pharmacists
  • transplant coordinators
  • psychologists
  • social workers
  • child life specialists
Francis Fynn-Thompson, MD – Surgical Director, Heart & Lung Transplant

Together, we are dedicated to caring for some of the most acute cardiac patients in the country.

  • More than 60 percent of heart transplant evaluations are for patients with complex congenital heart disease.
  • The remainder of the patients evaluated for transplant have a diagnosis of cardiomyopathy that has failed maximal medical management.

Our program makes frequency use of Boston Children’s advanced cardiac catheterization lab. Here, we can visualize what’s happening in the heart in fine detail, and take measurements of blood pressure and flow. Our colleagues specializing in interventional cardiology can even make a number of repairs with catheterization, like expanding narrowed passages and closing holes.

Did you know?

Mechanical circulatory support

Boston Children’s physicians and nurses have played a leading role in the research and regulatory issues surrounding pediatric ventricular assist device (VAD) use in the United States. These devices give blood circulation a boost and can serve as a life-saving bridge to transplant. Boston Children’s cardiologist Christopher Almond, was integral in designing and conducting the multi-institutional study of the Berlin Heart®, which gained FDA approval for use in children in 2011. Boston Children’s continues to expand the field of VAD support in children by introducing new devices such as the HeartWare® HVAD allowing children to be discharged home and to resume activities of life. A Boston Children’s patient was the first child in North America to go back to school with a VAD as she waits for a heart transplant. Learn more.

Danielle

Danielle at 15, six years after heart transplant

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Locations
  • Heart Center at Boston Children's Hospital

    Thank you, CHOB!!! Gabe is 10. Born with a form of HLHS and DS. In 2003 very few children with this dual dx survived for more than a few years. Dr. Del nido found a way. There are no words to express our gratitude. Never give up hope. Pray for direction.Read More

  • Heart Center at Boston Children's Hospital

    Our son Hayden was born 5/12/14 with undiagnosed Transposition of The Great Arteries. He was transferred to Boston Children's and his team of doctors saved his life. He was very sick leading up to his Arterial Switch and... Read More

  • Heart Center at Boston Children's Hospital

    One year ago our little Jonah went in for open heart surgery. He is now 15 months old and is a happy, healthy little boy. We can't thank Dr. Emani and the rest of the crew from the Heart Center at Boston Children's Hospital enough! Little Jonah thanks you too!Read More

  • Heart Center at Boston Children's Hospital

    Michael has two birthday's every year now; born on April 14, and re-born on June 3, 2011. It's been three years now since his heart surgery at Boston Children's Hospital. Michael is doing incredibly well, even ...Read More

  • Heart Center at Boston Children's Hospital

    You would never know our little heart warrior Reece was just at BCH undergoing his 8th heart cath. Thank you to all the doctors, especially Drs. Lock and Marshall, for making sure our little miracle is always smiling!Read More

Contact the Heart Transplant Program

The future of pediatrics will be forged by thinking differently, breaking paradigms and joining together in a shared vision of tackling the toughest challenges before us.”
- Sandra L. Fenwick, President and CEO
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