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Transplant Milestones

Since its creation in 1966, UW Health's transplant program has been at the forefront of transplant innovation.

The only Medicare-approved lung transplant program in Wisconsin


Joined a national kidney exchange program for living donor kidney transplants


Became a National Liver Transplant Center for Veterans Administration


Participated in the nation's largest kidney exchange (30 pairs)


Reached 1 million registered donors on Wisconsin Donor Registry

2010 Wisconsin's first four-way paired donation kidney exchange | Read more

The UW Health OPO honored the wishes of 142 organ donors, a new milestone


Twelve (of 12 eligible) hospitals in the UW Health OPO service area received the National Medal of Honor for their outstanding efforts in donation


Performed more kidney/pancreas transplants than any other program in the nation 12,000th organ transplant performed


Performed a record-breaking five heart transplants in the same week


Completed the state's first domino liver transplant


Centers of Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) approval granted for all organ programs under new conditions of participation


400th lung transplant performed


10,500th organ transplant performed


2,500th live donor kidney transplant performed


1,500th liver transplant performed


First in the nation to perform a combined kidney/pancreas transplant post-desensitization using deceased-donor organs


600th heart transplant performed


1000th kidney/pancreas transplant performed, more than any other program in the world

OPO receives three HHS national awards honoring their work to improve overall quality, conversion rates, DCD donors and organs transplanted per donor
First combined liver/pancreas transplant performed by Dr. Stuart Knechtle
Desensitization Program directs first sensitized and ABO incompatible kidney transplant
Ranked #1 kidney and kidney/pancreas transplant program in the nation, by volume
1,000 heart and lung transplants performed
Pancreas transplant performed on the youngest recipient in the world
Ranked #1 kidney transplant program in the nation, by volume
Ranked #1 kidney/pancreas transplant program in the nation, by volume
6000th kidney transplant performed
1,000th pancreas transplant performed
Initiated new protocol for highly-sensitized and ABO-incompatible living donor kidney, allowing greater number of patients to be eligible for kidney transplants
2,000th live donor kidney transplant performed
Kidney transplant program ranked the largest program in the nation and the second largest in the world
Simulataneous kidney-pancreas transplant program ranked largest in nation
First "humanitarian" live donor kidney transplant performed
500th heart transplant performed
First islet cell transplant performed in Wisconsin
1,000th liver transplant performed
8,000th transplant performed
UWHC OPO ranked second-largest OPO in the United States with 34 donors/million population
First laparoscopic donor nephrectomy performed by Dr. Anthony D'Alessandro
Second largest transplant program in the country performing 480 total transplants
Transplant division has secured more than $6 million for clinical trials since 1990
Islet cell transplantation project initiated
First adult to adult living related liver transplant performed by Dr. Stuart Knechtle
Dr. Yolanda Becker and Dr. Hans Sollinger receive funding for xenotransplantation project, allowing the study of the use of animal organs for human transplantation)
6,000th organ transplant performed
William Burlingham, PhD, describes the relationship between chimerism and tolerance in certain transplant recipients
UWHC OPO ranked most effective in the United States
4000th kidney transplant performed
UW Hospital and Clinics ranked second most active transplant center in the U.S.
500th pancreas transplant performed
CellCept, studied by Dr. Hans Sollinger, approved by FDA
1,000th live donor kidney transplant performed
200th heart transplant performed
500th liver transplant performed
First split liver transplant performed
UW Hospital and Clinics Clinical Trials Department established
First combined heart/lung transplant performed in Wisconsin
2,000th kidney transplant performed
Lung transplant program established
First reduced liver transplant performed
UNOS certifies multi-organ transplant program
Intestinal transplant program established by Dr. Anthony D'Alessandro
Multi-organ transplant program established
HCFA certifies UW Organ and Tissue Donation
Dr. Folkert Belzer and UW Medical School biochemist Dr. James Southard, PhD, develop "UW solution," a cold storage organ solution now used worldwide
Liver transplant program established by Dr. Munci Kalayoglu
Dr. Hans Sollinger develops "Wisconsin Technique" used in pancreas transplantation
Pancreas transplant program established
Dr. Folkert Belzer and Robert Hoffman, developers of a kidney preservation machine, come to UW Hospital and Clinics from the University of California at San Francisco
Heart transplant program established
First kidney transplant performed at UW-Madison