The UW Department of Surgery’s transplant service, initiated in 1966 and established as the Division of Transplantation in 1995, is one of the most active and successful in the United States. The division performs more than 400 organ transplants each year and maintains survival rates in the top three percent, as reported by the United Network for Organ Sharing
With such breakthroughs as the UW-Belzer solution for organ preservation, research and clinical trials for the immunosuppressive drug mycophenolate mofetil, and the development of improved surgical techniques for pancreas transplantation, the division has earned acclaim from the international medical community.
As a fellow on rotation or as a fellow in the Division of Transplantation, you will gain in-depth clinical experience in the techniques of kidney, pancreas, islet, liver, and small-bowel transplantation; vascular access; immunosuppression; and management of post-transplant complications. You will be exposed to procedures for organ procurement and clinical approaches to organ preservation.
You will be involved in all stages of a transplant patient’s care, from the time he or she is placed on an organ waiting list, through the perioperative period, and through the years of follow-up care.
In addition to its clinical program, the Division of Transplantation provides an excellent venue for basic science research. It is precisely the close relationship between the laboratory and the clinical care of patients that contributes to the University of Wisconsin’s outstanding record of successful transplants.
Research efforts are, to a large extent, funded by the National Institutes of Health, and include programs in organ preservation, the development of new immunosuppressants, gene therapy for diabetes as an alternative to pancreas transplantation, and induction of immunological tolerance to organ transplantation as an alternative to lifelong immunosuppression. Continuing clinical studies of several antirejection drugs help maintain Wisconsin’s place as a world leader in clinically applied immunosuppressive therapy.
In addition to participating in a bi-weekly Journal Club meeting, fellows are also involved in organizing weekly speaker conferences. Attendance is required at a number of other educational conferences in the Division and the Department of Surgery.
General Surgery residents as well as fellows from other UW departments rotate through the Division of Transplantation. The Division of Transplantation offers four transplant surgery fellowships, three in odd years and one in even years.
In conjunction with the Department of Medicine Section of Nephrology, the Division of Transplantation also offers a one-year Transplant Medicine Fellowship annually.