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Kidney and Liver Transplant Surgeons

Dr. Glenn Halff

Glenn Halff, MD
Professor of Surgery/Dielman Chair,
University Transplant Center
UT Health San Antonio

Dr. Glenn Halff is the Director of University Transplant Center. He received his medical degree at the University of Texas Medical School in Houston, Texas. He completed his residency and internship at New York University in New York City, New York and his transplant fellowship at the University of Pittsburg. In 1992, he started the liver transplant program at UT Health San Antonio. He performs adult and pediatric liver and kidney transplants. Along with Dr. Francisco Cigarroa, he performed the first split-liver transplant in South Texas. He also performs adult to adult living liver transplants and specializes in all liver, biliary and pancreas surgeries.


Dr. Francisco CigarroaFrancisco Cigarroa, MD
Division Head of Liver and Pediatric Transplantation Surgery
Carlos and Malú Alvarez Distinguished University Chair
Ashbel Smith Professor in Surgery
UT Health San Antonio

Dr. Francisco Cigarroa is the surgical director of the Pediatric Transplant Program. Dr. Cigarroa is a visionary academic leader and nationally renowned transplant surgeon. He received his bachelor’s degree at Yale University in Connecticut, his medical degree from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas, and completed fellowships in pediatric surgery and transplant surgery at John Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore. In 1995, Dr. Cigarroa joined the faculty at UT Health San Antonio. In 1997, he was part of the surgical team that performed a split-liver donor transplant between two recipients, the first operation of its kind in Texas. In 2003, President George W. Bush appointed him to serve on the President’s Committee on the national Medal of Science. In 2009, he became the first Hispanic to be named Chancellor of The University of Texas System. On February 10, 2014, Cigarroa announced his resignation as Chancellor from the UT System to return full-time to his passion in patient care. He has made and continues to make impressive and lasting contributions in the medical community. Dr. Cigarroa specializes in adult and pediatric liver and kidney transplant surgery. Along with the surgical team at University Transplant Center, he has performed complicated liver tumor resections, vascular reconstruction for pancreatic tumors previously categorized as inoperable, repaired bile duct injuries, and performed life saving surgery on pancreatic cancer patients. 


Dr. Robert Esterl

Robert Esterl, MD
Professor of Surgery
UT Health San Antonio

Dr. Robert Esterl received his medical degree at St. Louis University, St. Louis, Missouri. He completed his internship and residency in General Surgery at St. Louis University Hospitals, St. Louis, Missouri. He completed his abdominal transplant fellowship at St. Louis University Hospitals and at The University of Nebraska, Omaha, Nebraska. In 1995, he performed the first combination kidney/pancreas transplant at University Transplant Center. Dr. Esterl specializes in kidney, kidney/pancreas, pancreas and liver transplants.


Dr. Greg Abrahamian

Gregory Abrahamian, MD (LtCol USAFR)
Joan Wish Endowed Professorship in Transplant Surgery
Surgical Director of Renal Transplantation
Associate Professor of Surgery
UT Health San Antonio

Dr. Abrahamian is the Surgical Director of the kidney transplant program. He received his medical degree from UT Health San Antonio. He completed his residency and transplant fellowship at Wilford Hall Medical Center in San Antonio, Texas and Massachusetts General Hospital. He specializes in adult and pediatric kidney and liver transplant surgery.


Dr. Colleen JayColleen Jay, MD
Assistant Professor of Surgery
Surgical Director of Pancreas Transplantation
Director of Living Kidney Donor program
Director of Clinical Research for Transplantation
Valero Distinguished Chair in Transplantation
UT Health San Antonio

Dr. Jay earned her medical degree from Indiana University School of Medicine in 2005. She completed a residency in general surgery at Northwestern Medical Center in Chicago. During her time there, she also obtained a master’s of science degree in clinical investigation from Northwestern University, and continues to do clinical research focused on liver and kidney transplantation outcomes. She completed her surgical transplant fellowship at the Mayo Clinic in 2014. Dr. Jay specializes in liver, pancreas, and kidney transplant surgery.


Dr. Tarunjeet Klair

Tarunjeet S. Klair, MD
Assistant Professor of Surgery
Abdominal Organ Transplantation
Hepato-Pancreato-Biliary Surgery
UT Health San Antonio

Dr. Klair completed his medical degree from Manipal University in India and his general surgery training at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine/Montefiore Medical Center in New York. He received fellowship training in abdominal organ transplantation and hepatobiliary surgery at the Columbia University Medical Center/New York Presbyterian Hospital. At Columbia, Dr. Klair was trained by some of the pioneers in transplantation – Drs. Jean Emond and Lloyd Ratner. Dr. Klair performs liver and kidney transplant surgery for adults and children. His special interests are in living donor liver transplantation and treatment of liver cancer.


Dr. Danielle Fritze

Danielle M. Fritze, MD
Assistant Clinical Professor of Surgery
University Transplant Center

UT Health San Antonio

Dr. Fritze completed her medical degree and subsequent surgical training at the University of Michigan. Following general surgery residency, she pursued additional fellowship training in transplantation and hepatobiliary surgery. Dr. Fritze specializes in liver and kidney transplantation as well as surgery of the liver, bile duct, and pancreas. She has a particular interest in pediatric transplantation.

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