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Intestinal Transplant

If you are referred for an intestinal transplant, you will complete an evaluation process with our transplant team to be sure that intestinal transplant is an appropriate treatment for you. During the evaluation process, your medical history will be recorded and you will complete a thorough medical examination and consultations with our doctors, nurses, dieticians and social workers. You also will have a variety of tests, which may include, but are not limited to:

  • Upper gastrointestinal and small bowel X-ray series
  • Barium enema
  • Endoscopy
  • Abdominal CT scan
  • Motility studies
  • EKG and echocardiography
  • Ultrasound of the circulatory system
  • Blood tests for liver function, electrolytes, kidney function and antibodies to certain viruses
  • Additional tests that help determine the success of the transplant

During your evaluation period, our team will provide you with detailed information about intestinal transplant and what to expect after surgery. During this time, you'll have an opportunity to discuss any questions you may have about the procedure.

You also will need to identify a friend or family member as a support person to help you after your transplant. Your support person is very important to your recovery period after you have been discharged from the hospital. They will need to stay with you during this time and accompany you to your follow-up appointments.

Waiting List

After you complete the evaluation process and tests, the results will be carefully reviewed and discussed by the intestinal transplant team and transplant selection committee. They will determine whether you are an appropriate candidate for intestinal transplant.

If you qualify for an intestinal transplant, you will be placed on the intestinal transplant waiting list, which is maintained by the United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS). UNOS is responsible for deciding how organs will be allocated to people in the United States. Intestines are allocated by wait time, except in some special cases when transplantation may be an emergency. Wait time for all organ transplants depends on the availability of organs and number of people on the waiting list. Intestinal transplant recipients may wait for six months or more to receive a transplant once they are placed on the waiting list.

When an organ becomes available, you will be asked to come to UCSF Medical Center where you will be evaluated by a doctor on the transplant team and undergo a few more tests to be sure that your medical condition has not changed. It is important to remember that occasionally a transplant recipient may be called into the hospital for surgery for a "false alarm," when the organ offered to them is determined unsuitable. In such cases, patients are sent home, but retain their position on the waiting list and will be offered the next available suitable organ.

Reviewed by health care specialists at UCSF Medical Center.

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UCSF Clinics & Centers

Organ Transplant

Intestinal Rehabilitation and Transplantation Program
350 Parnassus Ave., Suite 410
San Francisco, CA 94143
Phone: (877) 762-6935
Phone: (415) 353-2336
Fax: (415) 353-8917
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