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UT Southwestern Medical Center offers therapeutic apheresis for patients with various conditions, including hematological, neurological, kidney, and skin disorders.
The types of apheresis procedures we perform include:
- Therapeutic plasma exchange, which removes and replaces plasma
- Photopheresis, which collects and treats white blood cells
- Red blood cell exchange, which removes and replaces red blood cells
- Lipid (LDL) apheresis, which removes low-density lipoproteins, very low-density lipoproteins, lipoprotein(a), and triglycerides
The therapeutic apheresis program at UT Southwestern is recognized as one of the most prominent of its kind in the U.S., providing quality-of-life therapies to the Dallas-Fort Worth community and beyond.
Expert Therapeutic Apheresis Team in Dallas
Apheresis is a nonsurgical treatment in which a component of blood, such as plasma or red blood cells, is removed or replaced. Removal and/or replacement of these components can be used to decrease or prevent worsening of disease.
The therapeutic apheresis program at UT Southwestern offers both inpatient and outpatient services seven days a week. We have a dedicated team of physicians, advanced practice providers, registered nurses, and certified apheresis technicians who provide leading-edge care and uphold our institution’s mission of delivering the highest level of quality, safety, and service.
Our program is led by Ravi Sarode, M.D., former President of the American Society for Apheresis (ASFA) and current Co-Editor-in-Chief of the medical journal Transfusion and Apheresis Science.
Nicole De Simone, M.D., M.P.H., Amena Usmani, M.D., M.B.A., and Sean Yates, M.D., are other faculty members who have also greatly advanced the field of apheresis through various clinical trials and publications. These efforts include optimizing management for sickle cell patients and advancing evidence-based treatment of thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura (TTP), a rare blood disorder, LDL apheresis for recurrent FSGS, and ECP for lung transplant rejection, for example.
Our dedicated nursing staff is equally involved in furthering the field of apheresis. Several of our nurses are key members of ASFA and have performed clinical studies, published manuscripts, and presented educational sessions. They have played a key role in promoting the use of peripheral venous access for apheresis procedures, which has led to the reduction of central catheters use in our patients. In addition, our nurses have been recognized for their excellence in patient care, receiving honors including the DFW Great 100 Nurses and the DAISY Award.
Our Apheresis treatments are provided in a state-of-the-art hospital-based clinic, specifically built for our expanding services. Each procedure is performed in a private room, with ample space for visitors.
Clinical Conditions We Treat with Therapeutic Apheresis
We use apheresis to treat a variety of clinical conditions, including:
- Sickle cell disease, a disorder that affects the ability of red blood cells to carry oxygen to the body
- Transplant rejection of solid organs (heart, lung, kidney)
- Autoimmune diseases such as myasthenia gravis, multiple sclerosis/neuromyelitis optica (NMO), and TTP
- Familial hypercholesterolemia, an inherited genetic condition that causes the accumulation of “bad” cholesterol
- Focal segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS)
- Mycosis fungoides
- Graft-versus-host disease (GVHD)
Apheresis: What to Expect
Before the apheresis procedure, our staff will perform an ultrasound-guided assessment of patient’s veins. This determines suitability of inserting intravenous catheters to draw blood into the apheresis machine and then return it back to the patient. If the veins are fragile or too small, an indwelling port or tunneled dialysis catheter will be placed.
After vein evaluation, an apheresis physician will provide consultation and answer any questions pertaining to apheresis. A specialized nurse will then provide care during your procedure.
How to Refer a Patient for Apheresis
Our outpatient program offers an easy referral process for patients across Texas and neighboring states. Our team will assist with insurance authorization and coordination of care.
As part of the care, we routinely perform a peripheral vein evaluation to avoid the need for central venous access. In addition, our apheresis physicians are readily available to consult and collaborate with the referring physician to develop a treatment plan.
Please contact our Apheresis Clinic at 214-633-3190, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.