Cardiovascular perfusion replaces the functions of the human heart and lungs during an open heart procedure to facilitate surgery. It is the perfusionist's job to maintain the body's circulation and respiration during these procedures through specialized outer-body circulation equipment. Academic opportunities are available to individuals interested in a career in perfusion technology at a postgraduate, and occasionally, a baccalaureate level.

Milwaukee School of Engineering

The Milwaukee School of Engineering offers a Master of Science in Perfusion (MSP) which prepares students to write the American Board of Cardiovascular Perfusion's Certified Clinical Perfusionist's examination. The two-year program's curriculum is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) and provides students with a thorough knowledge of the equipment and techniques involved in extra-corporeal circulation. Individuals in the program perform a minimum of 100 perfusion procedures during clinical placements which all take place in the Milwaukee region. The full-time program incorporates daytime practicum with evening classroom study for a rigorous learning experience.

Milwaukee School of Engineering

1025 N. Broadway

Milwaukee, WI 53202-3109


University of Iowa

The Perfusion Technology Certificate at the University of Iowa is a 20-month postgraduate program that prepares students for a healthcare career through a combination of classroom education and clinical application. The first two semesters of the program introduce students to the theory and techniques involved in cardiopulmonary bypass, patient monitoring and blood conservation while the remaining three semesters are spent learning to apply these techniques at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics. This is a competitive program and applicants must possess an undergraduate degree with several credits in chemistry, precalculus math, physics and human anatomy and physiology. Prospective students are required to submit three references and an application essay. Chosen candidates interview with department officials before final student selections are made.

University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine 200 CMAB Iowa City, IA 52242-2600 319-335-6707

Rush University

Rush University offers both a bachelor's degree and a master's degree in Perfusion Technology. Both programs provide a thorough education in human anatomy and physiology, pathology, pharmacology and the fundamentals of perfusion technology. Learning takes place in both the classroom and at Rush University Medical Center and its affiliated hospitals where students will participate in adult and pediatric open heart surgeries.

Prospective students to the bachelor's degree program must possess at least 60 credits in liberal arts and sciences, while applicants to the master's degree program must have completed a Bachelor of Science degree and should have some professional experience in the medical field. Graduates from each program are eligible to write the certification exam for the American Board of Cardiovascular Perfusion.

Rush University 600 South Paulina St., Suite 440 Chicago, IL 60612 312-942-5000

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