(This process may differ at other cardiac centres)
Doctors are now able to offer surgery, medical interventions, and medication, which supports the half a heart to give adults a good, though not perfect, circulation. When one pump is doing the job of two, the heart will gradually tire, leading to increasing heart failure and the need for new treatment options. Transplantation, with all its challenges, is one of these options.
This information sheet is intended to describe what the process of being assessed for a transplant involves. The aim of this publication is to help anyone facing this treatment to gain a greater understanding of the assessment process. It will not give you an answer to every question you have. These in-depth questions can be answered by the Congenital Cardiac Doctors, Nurse Specialists and Transplant Teams during transplant assessment.
Reading this information may be difficult for people because transplant is an emotive subject. If you would like to receive support or further information, please do not hesitate to contact the LHM team on 0121 455 8982.
As you will know, there may come a time in your single ventricle journey when your cardiac team suggests you undergo a transplant assessment. This is a process which determines your heart function and the function of the other organs in your body, including your lungs, kidneys, and liver. The assessment process is conducted during a short admission to your nearest transplant centre. The process is undertaken to determine if you are suitable for a transplant, and if so, what type of transplant you need to undergo if you choose to follow this path.
The purpose of your admission is to determine if you might benefit from any advanced heart failure treatments that we offer, including transplantation. To make this decision it is important that we find out more information about you and your heart, and that you get to meet the team.
The assessment process can be likened to a car going into a garage having checks before its service and MOT: the assessment process does the same thing for your body & organs.
Your cardiac centre will refer you into the transplant centre for assessment, and the transplant team will contact you to inform you:
- When you will be admitted
- How long you will be admitted for
- What you need to do with your tablets before you are admitted (this is normally your anticoagulation in case you need a cardiac catheter)