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Yale New Haven Hospital sets milestone with 500th heart transplant

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YNHH’s Heart and Vascular Center recently conducted its 500th heart transplant. The team involved in these transplants includes cardiologists, surgeons, coordinators, anesthesiologists, nurses and administrative staff.


Yale New Haven Hospital’s Heart and Vascular Center reached a milestone May 15, performing its 500th heart transplant. The first at YNHH was performed in 1984.

“This achievement really enhances the status of Yale New Haven Hospital’s Heart and Vascular Center as the preeminent center for cardiac care in the region and state,” said Francine LoRusso, RN, senior vice president, Operations, and executive director for Heart and Vascular Services, Transplantation Center, Medicine Services and Radiology Services. “Few centers in the United States can look back on pioneering such life-changing procedures.”

The 500 milestone includes 30 adult heart transplants the Heart and Vascular Center (HVC) performed in 2018 – a Connecticut record. Heart transplants at the hospital increased 114 percent from 2017 to 2018. In addition, YNHH has a 100 percent survival rate for heart transplant recipients at 30 days post-surgery. 

“Over the last three years we have built a very busy heart transplant program that has helped so many patients achieve excellent outcomes and is now one of the best in the country,” said Arnar Geirsson, MD, surgeon-in-chief, Cardiac Surgery, Yale New Haven Health HVC. “We have a fantastic team of cardiologists, surgeons, coordinators, anesthesiologists, nurses and administrative staff that works hard to give patients with advanced heart failure a second chance at life.”

The YNHH heart transplant program works closely with Yale Medicine’s Comprehensive Heart Failure Program. The HVC has a team of experts in cardiovascular medicine, cardiac rehabilitation, cardiothoracic surgery, heart failure, peripheral vascular treatments, cardiovascular imaging and vascular surgery.

“One of the many reasons we have been so successful at YNHH is that our team focuses on comprehensive and compassionate care that is tailored to the individual patient,” said Tariq Ahmad, MD, medical director, Advanced Heart Failure Program, YNHHS and Yale School of Medicine. “That care is provided by a multidisciplinary team of experts in the fields of advanced heart failure, cardiac surgery and cardiac transplantation. This amazing team guides patients and families through their entire transplant experience.”