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Whole-organ pancreas transplants and partial liver transplant programs arepriorities for renowned transplant surgeon at Cedars-Sinai

Transplantation. He is returning to Cedars-Sinai to expand the spectrum of transplant services and to assist in the integration of several aspects of the abdominal organ transplant programs.

"We want to be among the top tier of transplant centers nationally and internationally in terms of the complement of services we offer, and in terms of our responsiveness to the needs of our patients and to the realities of the managed healthcare environment. But above all, we will put the needs of our patients first," said Dr. Shackleton. "I hope to complement the already outstanding transplant faculty at Cedars, and to act as a program integrating resource."

Pancreas transplants are not performed as often as those of the liver or kidney. There are a number of reasons for this, including the complexity of the operation in relation to the perceived benefits. "To date, a functioning whole-organ pancreas transplant is the only therapy available that can reliably remove the need for insulin injections in a Type I diabetic," said Dr. Shackleton, noting that pancreas transplantation still is usually reserved for diabetic patients who develop kidney problems.

"Our philosophy is that if a Type I diabetic is going to receive a kidney transplant and is thus going to undergo a major operation and be placed on immunosuppressive therapy, then there is no reason not to do a concomitant pancreas transplant and make them insulin independent at the same time. The ultimate consideration is whether the additional procedure can be done with a high expectation of success and at minimal additional risk to the patient."

Because the need for livers and kidneys is rising much more quickly than the number of organs becoming available, Dr. Shackleton and his colleagues will continue to employ the latest procedures to make the best use of cadaver organs and those provided by living donors.

"If we look at the growth in the
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Contact: Sandra Van
Sandy@VanCommunications.com
1-800-396-1002
Cedars-Sinai Medical Center
27-Aug-1999


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