Stanford Hospital Leads the West Coast in Utilization of Advanced Heart Transplant Technologies

Stanford transplant surgeons pioneer a new way forward with a Cardiac Transport System

STANFORD, CA, SEPTEMBER 2020—Stanford University Medical Center became the first heart transplant center on the West Coast of the United States to adopt a new Cardiac Transport System (CTS) for standard-of-care in donor heart preservation and transport.

The Stanford program has pioneered heart transplantation since they performed the first adult heart transplantation in the United States fifty years ago. Today, as one of the highest volume heart transplant programs in the nation, that tradition continues as they adopt new technologies to advance patient-centered care.

Dr. Joseph Woo, Chair of the Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery at Stanford Hospital, and the Norman E. Shumway Professor of Cardiothoracic Surgery at Stanford University, shared that "At Stanford, we make every effort to ensure that heart transplant recipients can expect and receive the highest level of care." What's more, "Our team has recently focused on improved donor heart preservation—and we now have adopted a novel donor heart preservation device as our go-to technology. We believe that utmost care of the gift of life for our patients on the wait list is critical: this technology not only permits continuous monitoring of the environmental conditions of the donor heart, but also ensures a data driven approach to how the heart is transported from the donor hospital back to Stanford."

Donor heart ready for transport in CTS

The first donor heart Stanford preserved with new Cardiac Transport System (CTS) set a record for the longest recovery—traveling across the country by jet and safeguarded for 283 minutes. "At Stanford, we often travel long distances to recover hearts for our patients and the time a heart can survive outside the body is very limited. On this case, we had a successful transplant despite the long distances, and since then we have used the system for 11 heart transplants in the last month," says Dr. Yasuhiro Shudo, the cardiothoracic surgeon at Stanford Hospital who procured the donor heart for this record.

Enabling long distance heart recoveries is an important capability to ensure patients on transplant waitlists can get the heart they desperately need. The award-winning CTS was designed to provide a controlled environment for donor hearts en-route to patients, a radical advancement from conventional methods.

"We are honored to be part of the life-saving work being accomplished at Stanford," said the CEO of this new Cardiac Transport System (CTS). "There are more people in need of heart transplants than there are hearts available. This drives our team's unyielding commitment to provide a reliable, safe preservation environment for organs undergoing the transplant journey."

Journey of a Donor Heart

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Joseph Woo, MD

Yasuhiro Shudo, MD