UC San Diego Health successfully makes first HIV liver transplant

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – UC San Diego Health is the first hospital in San Diego and only health care system in Southern California to transplant a liver from a donor with Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) into an HIV-positive recipient. The successful surgery is part of a national clinical trial that could result in more life-saving options and less time on the transplant wait list for HIV-positive patients.

UC San Diego Health is participating in two national clinical trials supported by the HIV Organ Policy Equity (HOPE) Act, which was passed by Congress in 2013. The HOPE Act permits transplant teams in the United States with an approved research protocol to transplant organs from donors with HIV to qualified recipients with HIV and end-stage organ failure.

“We are excited to be part of this groundbreaking effort that is resulting in more lives saved. The patient who underwent the liver transplant is doing well and we are incredibly grateful to the donor and family. Both have helped move science forward,” said Gabriel Schnickel, MD, surgical director of liver transplantation at UC San Diego Health. “The patients who will receive an organ in this trial are very ill and time is critical, so receiving an HIV organ increases their chances of getting a life-saving transplant.”

Dr. Saima Aslam from UCSD Health, the site principal investigator for both trials, joined KUSI News to discuss the groundbreaking procedure.

More information can be found here.

Categories: Health, Local San Diego News