Surgery in patients with heart transplants. Anaesthetic and operative considerations

Academic Article


  • As cardiac transplantation becomes more common, so an increasing number of patients with functioning heart transplants may require surgery for related or unrelated non-cardiac conditions. Fifteen patients who have undergone a total of 39 operations (excluding retransplantation) since heart transplantation were reviewed; 36% were for infective conditions and 23% each for gastro-intestinal and vascular lesions. There was one postoperative death in a patient undergoing leg amputation for overwhelming Clostridium welchii infection. There were no major non-fatal complications. The conditions for which operation may be necessary, the specific problems of anaesthesia and surgery in such patients, and the prophylactic measures which may be undertaken to ensure an uncomplicated clinical course are discussed. A clear understanding of the physiology and pharmacology of the denervated heart is essential if these patients are successfully to undergo major operations requiring general anesthesia.
  • Authors

    Published In

    Author List

  • Cooper DKC; Becerra EA; Novitzky D; Ozinsky J; Horak A; Reichart B
  • Start Page

  • 137
  • End Page

  • 142
  • Volume

  • 70
  • Issue

  • 3