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Boston Children's has launched the world's 1st program dedicated to offering hand transplants to children who qualify.
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Q. Who is part of the transplant team?
A. Our team includes transplant physicians, transplant surgeons, infectious disease specialists, transplant coordinator, transplant pharmacists, child life specialists, dietitians, psychologists, psychiatrists, social workers and financial coordinators. Their combined knowledge provides a fully comprehensive approach to treatment that is equipped to handle all transplant cases and any complications that may arise.
Q. How do I prepare for my child’s transplant?
A. While you are waiting, the goal is to ensure optimal health and preserve the best quality of life possible. Begin to make plans for you, your family and your child's needs following surgery such as transportation to clinic visits, assistance at home and financial issues. The transplant team will support you during this waiting period and will provide you with all the information and resources you need.
Q. How long will my child wait for a transplant?
A. Once your child has been added to the national organ transplant waiting list, an organ may be available immediately or it may take months. A number of factors impact how long the wait may be, including how well your child matches with the donor, your child’s condition and how many donors are available in your area compared to the number of patients waiting.
Q. What happens when the donor organ becomes available?
A. A donor organ may become available any time day or night. We will call you to come to the hospital once we have been notified. Timing is critical, so you need to arrive as soon as possible. We often need to have your child ready to go into the operating room within 1 to 2 hours of your arrival at Boston Children's.
Q. How long will my child be in the hospital?
A. The length of stay in the hospital depends on the type of transplant, the health of your child and the complexity of the case. Your child will be seen daily by the transplant team to monitor progress and work with you to develop a discharge plan.
Q. Will my child’s new organ last for his or her lifetime?
A. The life expectancy of a transplanted organ varies, but pediatric transplant recipients are likely to require re-transplantation at some point in the future; this could be when they are adults. At your routine visits, we monitor the health and function of your child’s new organ to ensure it is doing its job and develop a plan to address potential issues.
Q. How much will the transplant cost and does insurance cover the cost? A. Transplant is financially complex and you will need to check with your insurance company to determine coverage. Our financial coordinators are here to help. Visit financial considerations for more information or call 617-355-0137.
We are grateful to have been ranked #1 on U.S. News & World Report's list of the best children's hospitals in the nation for the third year in a row, an honor we could not have achieved without the patients and families who inspire us to do our very best for them. Thanks to you, Boston Children's is a place where we can write the greatest children's stories ever told.”