With a total of 192 transplants performed in 2017, IRCCS-ISMETT in Palermo is among the first Italian centers for number of liver, kidney, heart and lung transplants, according to the Italian National Transplant Center (CNT).
In particular, with its 82 liver transplants, IRCCS-ISMETT ranks fifth center in Italy (preceded by Molinette Hospital of Turin, University Hospital of Pisa, Niguarda Hospital of Milan, and Padua Hospital), and fourth center for use of split-liver, a technique that allows to perform two liver transplants (one adult and one pediatric) using one single organ.
IRCCS-ISMETT is one of the leading hospitals in Italy in the field of pediatric abdominal surgery and transplantation, performing pediatric liver and kidney transplants also with living-related donors. The living-donor transplant program is extremely active at IRCCS-ISMETT. According to data issued by CNT, IRCCS-ISMETT is the second center in Italy for number of liver transplants, and the third for number of pediatric kidney transplants.
“These are extremely important results,” says Dr. Angelo Luca ISMETT Director, “especially if we think that back in the 1990s Sicilian patients had to travel to other Italian regions or abroad to receive a transplant, with a huge impact on the economic and social resources. Today IRCCS-ISMETT is one of the leading transplant centers in Italy. Its outcomes were made possible thanks to the introduction of techniques and methods that allow maximizing the use of all available resources and drastically shortening the waiting lists. IRCCS-ISMETT is a center of excellence that invests in research and new technology with the goal to increase the number of available organs, reduce waiting times, and improve the quality of life of patients, while efficiently using the resources of Sicily’s Regional Healthcare System.”
The results certified by the CNT were obtained thanks to the introduction of cutting-edge organizational technologies and models, and to the integration with UPMC (University of Pittsburgh Medical Center), which made IRCCS-ISMETT an international reference for transplantation and highly specialized therapies, with 6% of its patients arriving from other regions and countries. One of the most important recently-introduced techniques at IRCCS-ISMETT is reconditioning that, in the case of the liver and lung, involves using perfusion techniques to regenerate organs initially considered not eligible for transplant.
The results accomplished at IRCCS-ISMETT are in line with an increase in the number of donors in Sicily. A success made possible thanks to the efforts of the Sicilian transplant network under the coordination of the Regional Transplant Center (CRT). As recently highlighted by CRT, there has been an increase of over 10% in the number of reported donors. A positive trend that has allowed an increase by over 50% in the number of utilized donors, and a reduction of organ donation refusal rates from 48% in 2016 to 37% in 2017.