A heart transplant is a surgical procedure in which a diseased or failing heart is replaced with a healthy heart from a deceased donor. Patients who suffer from heart conditions, such as advanced heart failure, may be considered for transplant when all other treatments have failed to improve their condition.
Houston Methodist J.C. Walter Jr. Transplant Center is home to the largest heart-lung transplant center in the nation. Our team helps patients with advanced heart failure through all stages of treatment, from slowing the progression of the disease and managing symptoms to the process of transplant surgery and recovery care. Our heart transplant team consists of cardiologists, cardiac surgeons, board-certified intensivists, pathologists, nurse coordinators, social workers, financial coordinators, dietitians and other health care professionals; we take a multidisciplinary approach which lets us provide a continuum of care that makes it possible to manage each patient’s entire medical situation while also offering compassionate personal support.
With access to clinical trials, advanced technology and unprecedented experience, our heart transplant team brings together experts in all facets of organ disease management to meet the specific needs of each patient. In some cases, patients may benefit from a ventricular assist device (VAD) to act as a “bridge to transplant” until a donor heart is ready.
Since Dr. Michael E. DeBakey performed his first heart transplant in 1968, Houston Methodist has led the way in cardiac transplants and the advancement of devices that support heart failure patients while they wait for transplant.
To learn about what to expect before and after heart transplant surgery, view our About Your Transplant page.
Perhaps the best way to learn about our transplant specialists is through our patients. We invite you to read these inspiring stories.
- Brian Gilliam’s new heart got him back on the golf course and back into life with his family.
- Rochelle Johnson’s quest for a healthy heart led her to Houston Methodist; now she enjoys every minute of her busy life with three kids.
- Cloyd Powell talks about how a ventricular assist device helped him stay alive and active until he could undergo transplant surgery.
Our physicians specialize in heart transplantation at the following locations.