Liver Transplant Program
The Pediatric Liver Transplant Program is one of the nation's leading liver transplant centers, known for excellent outcomes and for helping pioneer techniques that have made transplantation safer and more successful. This earned us a center of excellence designation from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. We care for young patients of all ages and sizes, from infants to young adults, and more than half of our pediatric liver transplant patients are younger than 2.
UCSF was among the first in the nation to perform liver transplants using living donors, and we now perform more of this type than any other program nationwide. With expertise in managing the immune-suppressing medications patients take after transplant (to prevent the body from rejecting the new liver), we work to minimize or even eliminate the need for these drugs over the long term.
Our main goal is to help our patients enjoy a normal life as soon as possible. To achieve this, we've assembled a team of specialists in transplant surgery, gastroenterology and hepatology, infectious disease, anesthesiology and pharmacology, as well as nurse coordinators, social workers, mental health professionals, nutritionists and financial counselors. We work closely with one another and with each family to achieve the best possible outcome for their child.
Our care doesn't end with the surgical recovery. We monitor both the function of the transplanted liver and our patients' overall growth and development throughout their childhood and into early adulthood. Most catch up on or accelerate their growth and go on to enjoy a normal quality of life. A number of our former patients are now grown up, with children of their own.
Children who receive liver transplants at UCSF Health have a survival rate of 95 percent one year after transplant and 90 percent five years after transplant, well above the national average. Among those who receive transplants from living donors, the three-year survival rate is 100 percent. Our program also has one of the lowest re-transplantation rates – the percentage of patients who need a second transplant – in the country.
Our locations (7)
Jennifer Clare Burgis
Christopher E. Freise
MD, FACSOrgan transplant surgeon
James M. Gardner
MD, PhDOrgan transplant surgeon
MDOrgan transplant surgeon
Manjiree Vikas Karandikar
MDPediatric infectious disease specialist
K. Pallav Kolli
Hung Gia Nguyen
Emily R. Perito
MD, MASPediatric gastroenterologist and liver and pancreas specialist
MDPediatric infectious disease physician
MDPediatric gastroenterologist and liver specialist
MDOrgan transplant surgeon
Sara Kathryn Smith
MDPediatric gastroenterologist and hepatologist
MBChBOrgan transplant surgeon
Rachel Lynn Wattier
MD, MSPediatric infectious disease specialist
Stephen Dwight Weston
Awards & recognition
Ranked among the nation's best in 10 specialties
One of the nation's best in gastroenterology & GI surgery
Plan your visit
What to Bring
- Photo I.D.
- Health insurance card
- Insurance authorization, if required
- Doctor's referral, if required
- Recent test results related to your child's condition
- List of medications, including dosages, plus any your child is allergic to
- List of questions you may have
- Device or paper for taking notes