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Learning that your child may need a transplant can be difficult to understand in the moment. At Boston Children’s Hospital, we're here to offer hope — and help. Our pediatric transplant center has more than 50 years of experience performing life-saving transplants and providing personalized care at every step of the transplant journey.

We offer specialized, uniquely collaborative programs dedicated to heart, lung, liver, kidney, and intestine and multivisceral — often treating cases others turn away. 

Young boy looks through door window that has splotches of color

Meet the Pediatric Transplant Center’s patients

Thanks to Jeremiah’s heart transplant, he’s back to playing the drums and hanging with his sisters.

We know a transplant is more than just a surgery. During each step of the transplant journey, our team is your team. We’re there with you from diagnosis to selecting the best treatment option, to preparing you and your family for the challenges that lie ahead. 

Our care approach is fully customized to each child, meaning we take a fresh look at each patient and develop a plan that meets the needs of your child and your family. Our goal is to provide the best long-term outcome, helping your child return to as normal of a routine as possible, and keep them healthy as they transition to adulthood.

Pediatric Transplant Center facts and figures

Organ Transplants performed through 12/31/23 First year of program
Kidney 991 1971
Heart 391 1986
Liver 397 1984
Lung 123 1990
Intestine/Multivisceral 25 2004
Heart-Lung 6 1992
Pancreas 17 2004


50 years of transplants

Since 1971, Boston Children’s has performed more than 1,800 transplants. We formed the interdisciplinary Pediatric Transplant Center to bring together clinicians and researchers from all organ programs to discuss common issues and learn from each other. We have been leaders in advancing the field of pediatric transplantation, finding new answers where they didn’t previously exist, and supporting the same goal of providing the best care for all of our patients — and for children everywhere.

A few of our accomplishments over the decades include:

  • developing techniques to perform dialysis on infants to get them to transplant
  • demonstrating that heart transplants can be performed on small children with congenital heart defects
  • researching and promoting the benefits of split liver transplantation
  • leading and advancing research in immunosuppressant drugs and protocols, from the use of alemtuzumab (Campath), to more recently, studying which medicines work best in pediatric patients to prevent heart rejection and have the fewest side effects
  • establishing multicenter collaboratives that allow the study of transplantation in children, not just adults

Over the next 50 years, we will continue our collaborative approach to caring for patients and look for new ways to move the field forward and improve the care for our patients.

Listen to some of our transplant recipients talk about their care and experience with the Pediatric Transplant Center over the years.

Non-directed donor program

Many living organ donors are parents, other family members, or adult family friends of children in need. However, these options are not enough to support every child in need of a transplant.

Did you know that complete strangers can also donate organs? These living donors are called non-directed donors. They do not know the child in need but want to help them by donating a piece of their own liver or a single kidney.

Many adults between ages 18 and 55 can be considered for non-directed donation. These adults must be healthy, with no liver disease and no major medical problems. Once a match is made and surgery is complete, donors are able to completely recover within a few weeks and can go back to their regular lives — knowing they just changed the life of a child in need.

For more on becoming a non-directed donor, please contact the Pediatric Transplant Center at 877-894-7337 or email us at

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