Pancreas Transplant Services

We offer a complete range of pancreas transplant services. From initial evaluation to post-transplant monitoring, our skilled nephrologists and surgeons provide patients with expert, attentive, compassionate, and family-centered care.

Our services also extend beyond transplantation. We provide care and treatment for a number of medical and surgical conditions that can arise in patients with renal disease.

Our services include:

Donor Transplants

A donor pancreas comes from a person who has died, who doesn’t have pancreatic disease, and who has consented to donation through the New England Donor Bank. A deceased person’s close relatives also can provide consent. The United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS) is responsible for the allocation of all deceased donor pancreas donations. UNOS uses a set of criteria, including waiting time and tissue compatibility, to match the pancreas. Visit Donate Life America or New England Organ Bank to learn more about the importance of organ donation.

Simultaneous Pancreas-Kidney Transplant (SPK)

SPK is a treatment for insulin-dependent diabetics who also have kidney failure. Approximately 70 percent of pancreas transplants are performed in combination with a kidney transplant. Both the kidney and the pancreas come from the same deceased donor.

An SPK procedure requires about five-eight hours.

Pancreas after Kidney Transplant (PAK)

A pancreas transplant is sometimes performed for insulin-dependent diabetics who already have had a successful kidney transplant. The pancreas comes from a deceased donor, but the kidney transplant may have been from either a living donor or a deceased donor.

A PAK procedure takes about three-five hours.

Pancreas Transplant Alone (PTA)

In the absence of indications for kidney transplantation, pancreas transplantation should only be done in patients who are type 1 diabetics and have had frequent potentially life-threatening complications. Type 1 diabetics without life-threatening complications should continue to control their condition with conventional (non-surgical) treatments.

Type 1 diabetics have poor insulin production, and a healthy pancreas can remedy that issue. A new pancreas, however, is not an effective treatment for improving glucose control, which is the issue in type 2 diabetics.

A PTA procedure takes about three-five hours.


Desensitization is a process that removes rejection-causing antibodies from the bloodstream, both before and after surgery. This process improves the likelihood that a recipient’s body won’t reject a donor organ. Our desensitization program, the oldest and largest in New England, helps to achieve excellent long-term survival rates.

Second Opinions

We offer second opinions to patients with complex conditions who are considering pancreas transplant surgery or who already have had a transplant.

Other Surgical Services

Our general and transplant surgeons provide expert care beyond transplantation. We can provide vascular access surgery for dialysis, placements of peritoneal catheters, laparoscopic and abdominal general surgery, and endocrine surgery.

Learn more about Brigham and Women's Hospital

For over a century, a leader in patient care, medical education and research, with expertise in virtually every specialty of medicine and surgery.

About BWH