Heart Transplant Program

The Heart Institute at Children's Hospital Los Angeles is a pioneer in pediatric heart transplants for children with end-stage cardiac or pulmonary disease. The Cardiothoracic Transplantation Center is part of the Division of Cardiothoracic Surgery.

Transplant Center Experts

The Division of Cardiothoracic Surgery is headed by Vaughn A. Starnes, MD, co-director of the Heart Institute and chair of the Department of Surgery at the Keck School of Medicine at the University of Southern California. An internationally recognized transplant authority, Dr. Starnes has performed "firsts," including transplanting a heart and lung into the youngest patient ever -- a four-month-old baby.

Also within this division are physicians with demonstrated excellence in surgical, cardiology and pulmonary specialties, along with trained transplant nurses and a full-time transplant coordinator. 

Our full spectrum of services includes evaluation, pre- and post-operative management and follow-up, surgery, hospitalization in a dedicated cardiothoracic intensive care unit (ICU), immunosuppression and ongoing coordination with the referring physician.

Transplant Resources

Heart Transplant Statistics

The first heart transplant at our hospital was performed on March 4, 1993. Since then, Children's Hospital Los Angeles surgeons have completed 130 heart transplants.

Pulmonary Hypertension

The Heart Institute offers comprehensive care for patients with primary (PPH) and secondary pulmonary hypertension, including the West Coast's largest PPH prostacyclin infusion program -- only one aspect of the leading pediatric pulmonary program in the Western United States. With prostacyclin therapy, the five-year survival rate for children with PPH jumps to more than 90 percent, providing a valuable window before transplantation becomes necessary.

Outcomes Data

Each year, the Scientific Registry of Transplant Recipients provides outcomes data for hospitals across the country. We compare our measures to other pediatric measures across the nation.