Stay Informed. Stay Healthy
WHAT IS KIDNEY TRANSPLANTATION
A kidney transplant is a surgical procedure to place a healthy kidney from a live or deceased donor into a person whose kidneys no longer function properly. The kidneys are two bean-shaped organs, the size of a fist, located on either side of the spine just below the rib cage. Their main function is to filter and remove excess waste, minerals and fluid from the blood by producing urine.
When the kidneys lose this filtering ability, harmful levels of fluid and waste accumulate in the body, which can raise the blood pressure and result in kidney failure (end-stage renal disease). It occurs when the kidneys have lost about 90 percent of their ability to function normally.
Common causes of end-stage renal disease include:
People with end-stage renal disease need to have waste removed from their bloodstream via a machine (dialysis) or a kidney transplant to stay alive.
WHY THE PROCEDURE IS PERFORMED
Kidney transplant is the treatment of choice for kidney failure compared to a lifetime on dialysis. The Kidney transplant procedure can treat chronic kidney disease with GFR less than or equal to 20 ml/min(Glomerular filtration rate is a measure of kidney function). Only one donated kidney is needed to replace two failed kidneys, making living-donor kidney transplantation an option.
WHO IS ELIGIBLE FOR A KIDNEY TRANSPLANT
Kidney patients of all ages can get a transplant. The patient must be healthy enough to have the operation, also be free from cancer and infection. A complete evaluation is done prior to the procedure.
However, for certain people with kidney failure, a kidney transplant may be more risky than dialysis. Conditions that may prevent a Doctor recommending against transplant can be old age, heart diseases, cancer, dementia and mental illness, drugs or alcohol abuse. Other health conditions that prevent the ability to have anti-rejection medication.
HOW IS THE PROCEDURE DONE?
A kidney transplant procedure can take anywhere between 3-5 hours.
Before the Procedure
During the Procedure
After the Procedure
WHAT ARE THE RISKS INVOLVED IN KIDNEY TRANSPLANTATION
Some of the risks besides rejection are similar to risks involved in other pelvic surgeries. These may include: