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Division of Transplant Anesthesiology

Welcome to the division of Transplant Anesthesiology at OU-Health. The division is actively involved in providing the highest level of expertise and specialist care for patients undergoing liver, kidney, or pancreas transplants.

The transplant anesthesiology division is an integral part of Oklahoma’s largest and most experienced transplant team for specialist care using an integrated, multidisciplinary approach. The division includes a highly specialized team of faculty with subspeciality fellowship training in solid organ transplant anesthesia and cardiac anesthesia. This team works in collaboration with the accomplished transplant surgeons, hepatologists, nephrologists, pulmonologist, and cardiologists to provide exceptional quality of care for the transplant recipients.

Liver transplantation procedure is one of the most challenging for an anesthesiologist and often involves a complex and dynamic interaction of coexisting medical problems including coagulopathy, encephalopathy, cardiomyopathy, and pharmacokinetic alteration of common medications. The faculty are actively involved in multi-disciplinary meetings to discuss patient selection, preoperative optimization, and perioperative management. All patients are meticulously reviewed in a monthly meeting by a multi-disciplinary team including the transplant anesthesiologists. This enables us to prepare dedicated plan of care tailored to the individual patient for the best possible outcomes.

The division has a dedicated and spacious liver-transplant operating room equipped with state-of-the-art equipment and resources, including a dedicated TEE machine, point-of-care viscoelastic testing, dedicated rapid infusing device.

Although the work hours involved can be grueling, the opportunities for professional growth and satisfying patient interactions are limitless.

Education and Research:

The division has a strong commitment to resident education and is associated with a ACGME-accredited Anesthesiology residency program. Our transplant anesthesiologists closely supervise the residents to prioritize both education and patient safety. They are involved in these transplant procedures from the CA-1 year. The division provides unparalleled and invaluable training experience for the anesthesiology residents with invasive monitoring, transesophageal echocardiography, pulmonary artery catheter placement, coagulation monitoring and blood management. The residents undergo extensive training in liver transplant procedures with didactic sessions and simulation training. The residents gain confidence in managing a variety of complex and highly stimulating cases and enjoy the benefit of the unique spirit of collaboration that this type of work environment engenders.

The residents are encouraged to pursue research opportunities, conduct QI projects, and present challenging cases at national meetings.

For Patients:

All patients being considered for a potential liver, kidney or pancreas transplant at OU-Health will be evaluated by a physician-anesthesiologist who specializes in transplant-anesthesia. This initial evaluation enables the anesthesiologist to learn and understand about your medical problems, explain the anesthetic plan and risks associated and answer your questions. Our goal is to provide you with excellent quality and the safest possible anesthetic experience for you.

Meet the Transplant Anesthesiology Faculty

Andrew Pontikes, MD

Andrew Pontikes, MD

Assitant Professor

Shashank S. Shettar, MD

Shashank S. Shettar, MD

Assistant Professor
Division Chief, Transplant Anesthesiology
Interim Division Chief, Obstetric Anesthesiology

Kofi Vandyck, MD

Kofi Vandyck, MD

Assistant Professor
Division Chief, Cardiovascular and Thoracic Anesthesia
Division Chief, Trauma Anesthesia