Members of the Pediatric Transplant Team
Transplant surgeons: The doctors who actually perform the transplant surgery.
Gastroenterologist: A gastroenterologist is a doctor who specializes in the digestive system. You may already be familiar with gastroenterology because of your child's intestinal disease. A gastroenterologist will do the assessment of your child's gastrointestinal tract (digestive system).
Anesthesiologist: This is a doctor that puts your child to sleep during the transplant surgery. They may examine your child during the evaluation to assess their airway and make sure it is safe to put your child asleep.
Cardiologist: This is a doctor that will assess your child’s heart function.
Infectious Disease Physician: This is a specialized doctor who will review your child’s past infection history, review immunization records and determine which vaccinations are required, provide education on preventing infections, and provide guidance on travel safety precautions.
Psychologist or Psychiatrist: You and your child and maybe other members of the family will probably meet with a psychologist or psychiatrist for the psychological evaluation. They will also be available to talk with you or your child throughout the transplant process.
Transplant Nurse Coordinator: This is the person who is with you from the beginning of the evaluation and throughout the entire transplant process. Your coordinator helps to communicate information between you and other members of the transplant team and helps educate you and your family about intestinal transplantation and what to expect at each step of the process.
Dietician: You and your child will meet with a transplant dietician before and after transplant. The transplant dietician will assess your child’s nutritional status and help to manage your child’s nutrition throughout the entire transplant process.
Pharmacists: Because of the immunosuppressant medications your child will take, you will become familiar with the pharmacists. They are a vital part of the transplant team. They will work closely with the transplant surgeons to make sure your child is getting the right type and amount of medicine to keep your child healthy and his or her transplant strong.
Social Worker: A social worker helps to make the transplant process easier for your family by providing emotional and social support. If you do not live close to your transplant center, your social worker can assist you in finding affordable housing in the area or find financial assistance or support programs.
Financial Coordinator: You will be assigned a financial coordinator who can assist you with the financial part of your child's intestinal transplant. This may mean helping navigate your way through the insurance system. If you need to raise funds for your child's transplant, the financial coordinator can help guide you through the fundraising process.
Child Life Specialist: This is a member of the transplant team that helps your child and family adjust to the hospital experience. They will also help you deal with anxiety and help you develop positive coping skills.
Occupational/Speech Therapies: If your child has an oral aversion, occupational and speech therapists may work with your child to overcome it. Therapy may be started before transplant, so once your child has a new intestine, your child will be more likely to meet nutritional requirements eating and drinking by mouth rather than intravenous feeds.
Physical Therapists: A physical therapist may evaluate your child prior to transplant and recommend exercise and physical activity plan to help prepare for the surgery. After transplant, physical therapists will develop an exercise program for your child. Physical activity is encouraged as it will strengthen your child's body and may help the healing process both mentally and physically.