When an organ is compromised by trauma or begins to fail, a transplant may be the most suitable treatment. Transplants involve removing a healthy organ or tissue from a donor to replace a diseased organ, blood or bone marrow in a recipient.
Organ transplant hospitals in Florida
The ability to give someone else the gift of life can be an incredible experience for donors, recipients and their loved ones.
At HCA Florida Healthcare, we're here to help make that a reality through our comprehensive organ transplant programs. As an integrated healthcare network that spans across the state of Florida, we're able to connect you to transplant specialists close to home. Additionally, our collaboration as a network allows us to find additional specialists, should you need them.
Transplant services we offer
The transplant process is detailed and thorough to ensure that your doctors receive all of the necessary information about your health, current condition and personal situation. Once approved for a transplant, our team will work together to continually monitor your health throughout the process — from evaluation through post-transplant recovery.
The first step in the transplant process is to undergo an evaluation. During this part of the process, our doctors get to know you and understand everything they can about your condition and any related conditions.
You will meet with a team of specialists who will collect information about your situation, including your:
- Condition and the health of organ being affected
- Overall physical health
- Mental health
- And any additional information that may be relevant to your treatment
Once our team has met and reviewed all aspects of your case, they will make a recommendation on whether or not you are eligible for a transplant.
Your transplant team and surgeon will discuss the benefits and risks of the surgery with you during your evaluation and are available to answer any questions you may have.
Finding an organ donor
The next step in the transplant process is to find a donor who has an organ that is compatible with you. This is something your transplant team will discuss with you.
There are two main avenues for finding a donor — deceased donors and living donors.
Deceased donor transplant
The donation of a deceased individual's healthy organ(s) provides recipients the opportunities to continue living long and full lives. Many of our transplant donations are made by the families of deceased individuals who believe in giving back.
Living donor transplant
In some cases, it is possible to receive an organ from a living donor. Receiving a living donor organ transplant is usually preferable to a deceased donor transplant. This is because living donor organs function longer in the body and provide better patient survival rates than deceased donor organs. This will also eliminate your need to stay on the waitlist for a deceased donor.
Living donor transplants are usually possible with organs such as the kidney, where a patient can offer to donate one of their own organs. Sometimes, partial donations from a living donor are also possible.
The transplant surgery will look different for each patient, depending on what type of transplant they are receiving. However, in general, the procedure involves replacing your diseased organ with the donated organ.
Doctors may recommend a patient for a kidney transplant when the kidneys are no longer functioning properly. This can be due to long-term or acute kidney failure.
Doctors may recommend a patient for a liver transplant when the liver is no longer able to function and filter toxins out of the body. Liver failure is often due to cirrhosis of the liver that can be caused by liver disease or substance abuse
Transplant recovery and lifestyle changes
After your transplant surgery, you will meet regularly with your doctors and transplant team to monitor the progress of the transplant. Additionally, your doctors will create and discuss your individualized postoperative care plan, which may include lifestyle changes to prevent any damage to the new organ.
Our Transplant team
When it comes to the transplant process, it takes a team effort from start to finish. Our doctors understand what an emotional experience the transplant process can be, which is why the members of your transplant team will meet with you one-on-one in a private setting to deliver a personalized experience.
Together, we'll work with your referring physician on a regular basis to keep them informed so that you receive seamless care throughout your transplant journey.
Your transplant team may differ depending on the type of transplant you are receiving. However, because the transplant relies on many parts of the body learning to rework together after the transplant is complete, your transplant team includes a mix of specialists, such as:
- Clinical coordinators
- Social workers
- Transplant surgeons
This team works collaboratively during your evaluation, preoperative care, surgery and postoperative care. They also help provide you access to support groups and financial planning resources.
HCA Florida Healthcare Organ Donation
HCA Florida Healthcare West Florida Division President and CEO Dr. Ravi Chari and Dr. Amy D. Lu, Chief of Abdominal Transplantation at HCA Florida Largo Hospital share the importance of organ donation to provide life-saving transplants for patients.
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