Pediatric Liver Transplant Program

Girl patient
Ranked Among the Top in the Country

Established in 1990, the Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta Liver Transplant Program has become one of the largest pediatric liver transplant programs in the country—performing 400 liver transplants on infants, children and young adults. 

Led by Joseph Magliocca, M.D., Surgical Director, and Rene Romero, M.D., Medical Director, our experienced, dedicated team is here to support you and your child every step through the transplant journey.

  • Transplant Process

      A liver transplant provides your child with a healthy liver from a donor. The donor is a person who gives your child a liver. Read more.

      Types of Transplants

      There are two main types of liver transplants, a deceased donor and living donor.

      - A deceased donor transplant provides your child with a liver from a person who has recently died. This is the most common type of liver transplant. To receive a deceased donor liver, you child is placed on the United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS) list.

      - A living donor is a person who gives your child part of his liver. The liver is the only organ that can grow back. When doctors remove part of a donor’s liver, the rest will grow back within a few weeks.

      Other types of liver transplants include:

      - Auxiliary transplant: This is a transplant that places part of a healthy deceased or living donor liver next to your child’s liver. The healthy liver is connected to vital blood vessels and organs. It helps do the work of your child’s liver until he is well. Sometimes, the healthy liver can be removed after your child’s liver begins to work again.

      - Partial graft: Doctors “cut down” the liver to a smaller size and then gives it to your child.

      Split liver transplant: A deceased donor liver is cut into two parts. The larger part is given to an adult or larger child. The smaller part is given to a small child or infant.

  • Care Team

      Our multidisciplinary team includes pediatric hepatologists, transplant surgeons, pediatric anesthesiologists, researchers, advance practice providers, transplant coordinators, nurses, transplant pharmacist, nutritionists and family support team members.

      This team works together to help ensure that our patients receive specialized care pre- and post-transplant in a place designed just for them. 

  • Family Support

      Having a child undergo a liver transplant can be an overwhelming, life-changing event for the entire family. 

      We offer a variety of special programs designed to involve the entire family, including the Adolescent Liver Transplant Clinic and liver transplant support groups

      These programs and events help families make connections with other families whose children have had a transplant or are waiting for a transplant.

      Additionally, we provide our patient families with our Liver Transplant Patient Family Handbook. This handbook provides important educational information about the entire liver transplant process. 

  • Research

      In conjunction with Emory University School of Medicine, we are committed to excellence and innovation in pediatric liver transplant research.

      To remain at the forefront of pediatric liver transplant research, we collaborate with other centers across the country and around the world to further our efforts and understanding of pediatric liver disease. 


    Liver Transplant Volumes and OutcomesWe are one of the largest pediatric liver transplant centers in the country, consistently ranking among the top pediatric programs in the U.S. 

    Additionally, we have liver transplant patient and graft survival rates that are better than the national average and some of the shortest wait times in the country.

    Read more about our results.


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