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Question:

Is an adult heart ever transplanted into a child?

Will they put an adult heart in a child and if so will the heart grow? If they do put an adult heart in a child, what happens to the heart and the child?

submitted by Jeana from Nebraska on 7/7/2011

Answer:

by Texas Heart Institute cardiologist, Roberta C. Bogaev, MD    

Roberta C. Bogaev, MDDear Jeana,
Heart transplant donors are chosen based on matching the recipient's blood type. In addition, we accept  a donor heart within 20% of the recipient's weight as well as height. In the last decade, I do not recall accepting a donor heart that is older than the recipient. 

When pediatric donor hearts are placed into children, they will grow with the child. On rare occasions, we may place a large child's heart into a small adult. It performs well and does not increase in size. Thank you for contacting the Texas Heart Institute AAHD. Sincerely.   

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Updated July 2011
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