University of Minnesota Health is a world leader in pancreas transplant surgeries. We performed the world’s first pancreas transplant in 1966. With this surgery, we proved that a person with diabetes can live without insulin injections. Since then, our transplant surgeons have performed over 2,300 pancreas transplants, or roughly 10 percent of the world’s procedures, at the University of Minnesota Medical Center.
University of Minnesota Health is home to the oldest and largest living-donor pancreas transplant program. In 1979, we performed the world’s first partial-pancreas transplant from a living related donor. We also performed the world's first laparoscopic donor surgery for pancreas and kidney donation.
Also in 1966, we performed the world’s first simultaneous kidney-pancreas transplant for patients in kidney failure. By performing a living-donor kidney transplant followed by a pancreas transplant, physicians were able to protect the new kidney from damage caused by diabetes.