The Massachusetts General Hospital Transplant Center guides patients through every stage of care with a multidisciplinary team of doctors, nurses, dieticians, case managers, financial coordinators and other clinicians to help navigate the transplant process.
The Yawkey Center for Outpatient Care
Leaders in Transplant Care
When you are referred to the Mass General Transplant Center, you will be cared for in a world-renowned hospital. As you move through the transplant process, from evaluation (to determine whether you are a transplant candidate) to organ transplantation, a team of doctors, surgeons, nurses, case managers and other clinicians work together to manage your care at every stage, with the goal of helping you return to a full and productive life.
Scroll through the tiles below to learn more about the team members who will support you during the transplant process and beyond.
Raymond Chung, MD
A hepatologist specializes in diagnosing and treating people with liver disease, hepatitis, pancreatitis, liver cancer or cirrhosis of the liver. Every day Mass General transplant hepatologists like Raymond Chung, MD, perform biopsies, ultrasounds or endoscopies to diagnose liver conditions.
Your Mass General transplant hepatologist works closely with your primary care physician and your transplant care team to assess your liver function, advise you on treatment options and help manage your care before, during and after a liver transplant.
Eliot Heher, MD, medical director, Kidney Transplant Program
Mass General nephrologists, like Eliot Heher, MD, medical director of the Kidney Transplant Program, specialize in diagnosing and treating kidney diseases, dialysis therapies and transplantation, including options for patients with diabetes.
At your first appointment, your nephrologist will review your medical history, conduct an exam and, if needed, order lab tests and a kidney ultrasound to determine your kidney function. Whether you require dialysis, a transplant or other treatment, your nephrologist works with your primary care physician and your transplant care team to provide treatment and aftercare.
Stephanie Moore, MD
Cardiologists like Stephanie Moore, MD, are important members of your transplant care team. A cardiologist specializes in diagnosing and treating patients with any type of heart condition, including those that may lead to a heart transplant.
Your transplant cardiologist may perform lab tests, an echocardiogram, chest X-rays and an exercise test to assess your heart function. Based on your results, your cardiologist will work with your primary care physician and your transplant care team to manage your care before, during and after a heart transplant.
Todd Astor, MD
Pulmonologists specialize in diagnosing and treating respiratory diseases such as emphysema, cystic or pulmonary fibrosis, or pulmonary hypertension. Transplant pulmonologists like Todd Astor, MD, work closely with your primary care physician and your transplant care team to evaluate your condition and determine whether you need a transplant.
At your first appointment, you may undergo an EKG, chest X-rays and pulmonary functioning tests. Based on your results, your care team will develop a treatment plan to manage your care during the entire transplant process.
Nahel Elias, MD, surgical director, Kidney Transplantation
Liver and Kidney Surgeons
Liver and kidney transplant surgeons like James F. Markmann, MD, PhD, and Nahel Elias, MD, work together to perform multiple organ transplants such as a combined liver and kidney transplant.
Whether you are a candidate for a combined liver-kidney or single organ transplant, your liver and kidney surgeons will help manage your care while you are in the transplant unit of the hospital. You will see your surgeons twice a day for careful monitoring and receive follow-up care from them until you have adapted to your new organ.
Joren Christian Madsen, MD, DPHL
Cardiac surgeons like Joren Christian Madsen, MD, DPHL, work with your Mass General cardiologist and transplant team to evaluate you for a heart transplant.
Your cardiac surgeon is involved in pre-transplant surgical care, which may include a ventricular-assist device (VAD) or other minimally invasive procedure while you wait for a transplant. They are also part of the team that performs your surgery once a heart becomes available. After surgery, you will see your cardiac surgeon twice a day for careful monitoring and receive follow-up care until you have adapted to your new organ.
John Wain, MD
At Mass General, thoracic surgeons like John Wain, MD, work closely with your transplant team to evaluate you for a lung transplant. Your thoracic surgeon will review your past treatments and, based on your condition, outline the plan for your surgery.
Your thoracic surgeon is also part of the team that performs your surgery once a lung becomes available. After surgery, your surgeon will care for you and monitor your progress, along with the rest of your care team. After you are discharged from the hospital, you will continue to see your surgeon for follow-up visits.
Jessica Witchey, RD
Good nutrition is an important part of staying healthy before and after an organ transplant. Mass General transplant dietitians, such as Jessica Witchey, RD, provide nutritional guidance to help you be a healthier transplant candidate and stay healthy and prevent infection after your surgery.
Our transplant dieticians work as part of your care team to develop a personalized diet plan and answer your nutrition questions before and after your transplant. They can also help you deal with medication side effects, such as appetite, weight loss or weight gain.
Sally Keck, RN
Mass General transplant coordinators set up health evaluations, a series of appointments to evaluate whether transplantation is the best option for you. They also serve as a single point of contact during each phase of the transplant process.
Transplant coordinators like Sally Keck, RN, support you at every step, whether it is scheduling your transplant evaluation, contacting you when an organ becomes available, communicating with your referring physician or reaching out to the United Network of Organ Sharing on your behalf.
Transplant Financial Coordinators
Navigating health insurance policies and other paperwork related to organ transplantation can be overwhelming. Mass General transplant financial coordinators such as Ellen MacLaughlin are available to answer questions about medical insurance coverage and transplant-related charges.
They also work with your insurance company to authorize treatment during each phase of the transplant process and help you coordinate other options, if needed. This level of support allows you to focus on what is most important—your health.
Nick Kontos, MD, and Lucia Coale, LICSW
Psychiatrists and Social Workers
Our psychiatrists and social workers specialize in helping transplant patients adjust to life with their new organ and cope with physical and emotional changes they may experience after surgery. Psychiatrists like Nick Kontos, MD, offer counseling and support before transplantation and after surgery, as you adjust to your new organ.
Social workers, such as Lucia Coale, LICSW, work with you on stress reduction and enhancing quality of life during and after your transplant. They are there for you every step of the way and can connect you with other resources, should you need them.
Camile Kotton, MD
Infectious Disease Specialists
Mass General transplant infectious disease specialists, including Camile Kotton, MD, work with your transplant team to help prevent you from developing infection before and after transplant.
Post transplant, when your ability to fight infection has decreased, our transplant infectious disease specialists will develop a personalized strategy to help prevent infection. In addition, they offer plans to help you avoid common sources of infection, monitor your medications and make recommendations that protect your health as you adapt to your new organ.
Deborah Whittaker, RN
Mass General was the first hospital in Massachusetts to achieve Magnet status, one of the highest honors for nursing care. You'll receive this award-winning care from nurses such as Deborah Whittaker, RN, who works with your entire care team throughout the transplant process.
Your nurses have special expertise in treating patients with your specific condition. Post-surgery, they will assist you with activities to increase your endurance. You will also receive long-term support and tools to help you manage your condition and your new organ after you leave the hospital.
Cindy Hayes, RN
After surgery, a case manager (a nurse) will work with you and your family to create a care plan for when you leave the hospital. Case managers like Cindy Hayes, RN, work side-by-side with your transplant team to plan your discharge and arrange your in-home needs, including nursing services, physical or occupational therapy and rehabilitation. Your case manager works with your insurance company to confirm insurance coverage for these services and to make sure you have a plan to obtain your prescription medications after you leave the hospital.
The Transplant Clinic
The Transplant Clinic cares for patients at every stage of the transplant process. From the first appointment, patient service coordinators such as Reina Galindo work with patients and families to facilitate care prior to transplant surgery as well as follow-up appointments after patients are discharged. Through the clinic, surgeons, medical specialists, nurses and other clinicians follow each patient's care plan closely and monitor their progress, assisting with recovery and medications as patients adjust to life with their new organ.