History of liver transplantation in Poland
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Experimental research on liver transplantation was introduced in Poland by Waldemar Olszewski and his team in 1972. Not until 15 years later, in 1987, did Stanisław Zieliński in Szczecin and Marian Pardela in Katowice make an attempt of transplanting liver in humans. In 1989 another attempt was made by Jacek Pawlak and Marek Krawczyk in Warsaw. The first successful liver transplantation in Poland was performed in 1990 by Piotr Kaliciński at the Children’s Memorial Health Institute, Warsaw. Also, in early 1990s the attempts were made by Jerzy Polański in Warsaw and Piotr Szyber in Wrocław. In the next years, liver transplantations were connected with three centers in Szczecin and were associated with the following persons: Roman Kostryka, Maciej Wójcicki and Samir Zeaira. In Warsaw, 1994, Jacek Pawlak, Bogdan Michałowicz and Krzysztof Zieniewicz performed another successful liver transplantation. The program started to develop rapidly and is still up and running. In 2000, Wojciech Rowiński and Marek Pacholczyk created another liver transplant center in Warsaw, while in 2005 Lech Cierpka and Robert Król did the same in Katowice. In the following years, liver transplantation was initiated by Maciej Słupski in Bydgoszcz (2017) and Zbigniew Śledziński in Gdańsk (2018). In the developing liver transplant centers, an exceptional contribution was made by Paweł Nyckowski, Jacek Pawlak, Krzysztof Zieniewicz, Waldemar Patkowski, Tadeusz Wróblewski, Rafał Paluszkiewicz, Marek Pacholczyk, Andrzej Chmura, Maciej Kosieradzki and Marek Krawczyk – all employed by the Medical University of Warsaw. In Wrocław, Dariusz Patrzałek and Paweł Chudoba were very active in the field of liver transplantations. In 1996, the Organizing-Coordinating Center for Transplantation POLTRANSPLANT was brought to life and at first was directed by Janusz Wałaszewski, then by Roman Danielewicz and Artur Kamiński. In 1999, Piotr Kaliciński and Marek Krawczyk started the program for liver fragment harvesting and transplantation from living donors. Until the end of 2016, 4186 liver transplantations including 314 liver transplants from living donors were performed in Poland. Currently there are three active centres in Warsaw, namely Pediatric Surgery and Transplantation Surgery, Children’s Memorial Health Institute; Department of General, Transplant and Liver Surgery, Medical University of Warsaw; Department of General and Transplant Surgery, Medical University of Warsaw. Other active centres in Poland are Department of General and Transplant Surgery, Provincial Hospital in Szczecin, Department of General, Vascular and Transplant Surgery, Medical University of Silesia, Katowice, Department of Vascular, General and Transplant Surgery in Wrocław. Liver transplant programs have also been initiated at the Department of Liver and General Surgery, Bydgoszcz, and Department of General, Endocrine and Transplant Surgery, Medical University of Gdańsk.
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