Loading Results
We have updated our Online Services Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. See our Cookies Notice for information concerning our use of cookies and similar technologies. By using this website or clicking “I ACCEPT”, you consent to our Online Services Terms of Use.

Heart Transplant Patient Evaluation

A wide range of information is needed to determine if a person is eligible for a heart transplant. For those preparing to undergo a heart transplant, the process can seem overwhelming. Not only does the fear and anxiety of impending surgery bring stressful feelings, but also the worries of a successful transplant can take an emotional toll.

Our highly-trained, dedicated staff are committed to helping patients feel at ease, from the first consultation through the actual transplant and all outpatient follow-up visits at University Hospitals.

Make an Appointment

To request an appointment with a transplant specialist, call 440-623-7709.

Make a Referral

Transplant Patient Education

Once a patient is referred to the Heart Transplant Program at University Hospitals Transplant Institute, an intake coordinator conducts a phone interview with the patient to obtain contact information, insurance and medical history. Once this interview is complete, the patient is scheduled to attend a mandatory education class. The education class is taught by a transplant nurse coordinator and reviews the following:

  • Patient selection criteria
  • Necessary medical tests
  • Heart transplant waiting list
  • Information about the procedure itself
  • What to expect during recovery
  • Importance of anti-rejection drugs to prevent complications
  • Post-transplant follow-up appointments and care

Evaluation & Tests

At the UH Heart Transplant Program, an extensive evaluation is performed before the patient is added to the heart transplant waiting list. Common tests include:

  • Blood tests to help find a good donor match and help improve the chances that the donor heart will not be rejected
  • Diagnostic tests to assess overall health and lung function, including:
    • Mammograms and Pap smears for females
    • Colonoscopy for patients over age 45
    • PPD (TB skin test)
    • Computed tomography (CT) scan
    • Electrocardiogram (EKG)
    • Chest X-ray
    • Pulmonary function test (PFT)
    • Heart catheterization
  • Psychological and social evaluation to understand how stress, financial issues and support from family or significant others can greatly affect how you do after the transplant

During the evaluation process, multiple experts in the UH Heart Transplant Program will meet with the patient. These expert include:

  • Transplant surgeons
  • Advanced heart failure cardiologists
  • Anesthesiologists
  • Infectious disease experts
  • Nurse coordinators
  • Psychologists
  • Social workers
  • Dietitians

The transplant team will consider all the information from interviews, your health history, findings from your physical exam and your diagnostic test results when deciding if you are eligible for a heart transplant.