A kidney transplant is a transplant from a healthy kidney from another individual (the donor) to the body of someone with end-stage kidney disease (the recipient). Kidney transplant is one of the most common and most reliable organ transplantation procedures. While dialysis is a more accessible alternative to chronic renal failure, transplantation is the only treatment that allows patients to return to normal life.
Kidney transplantation allows you to find an almost normal life, without a strict diet or limitation of activity. Women can have a successful pregnancy, which is practically impossible with dialysis.
After a check-up to verify the indications and contraindications to the transplant, the candidate is registered on the waiting list of his or her transplant center
Who Is This For?
Individuals who have end-stage chronic renal failure and do not have any condition or disease that would make the kidney transplant impossible.
Potential Risks & Side Effects
Success Rate: 90%
How Does it Work?
The kidney can be stored for 48 hours, at a temperature of 4 ° C, after collection. Patients registered on waiting lists must therefore be able to be reached at any time and be ready to respond to a transplant proposal. Today, in practice, the process between the potential identification of a donor and implantation in the recipient lasts approximately 24 hours.
In order to limit the risk of rejection, it is tried to be transplanted kidneys as compatible as possible. The donor must therefore be from the same blood group and, if possible, identical in the HLA system (in the case of real twins) or semi-identical. The results of transplants with living donors are better, because the surgery is scheduled in advance (recipient and donor are operated at the same time, by two different teams, in two neighboring operating rooms), there is a better compatibility, therefore less risk of rejection, and, above all, the kidney is of better quality because it is grafted immediately after removal. Once the procedure has been carried out, the donor can resume his professional activities after 3 to 4 weeks off work.
What Does a Kidney Transplant Surgery Involve?
1. Consultation for Kidney Transplant
As in every process, you will take an online consultation to make sure that you’re a suitable candidate for kidney transplant surgery. During this consultation, your complaints and story will be learned in detail and you will be asked if you have had any current health condition or any surgery that you have experienced before, as well as all of your tests and imaging results. Thus, we can better evaluate your case and prepare a customized treatment plan for you.
In light of all the information you provide, it will be decided whether you are eligible for this treatment and if you want to continue the process, the second phase will begin.
2. Planning Your Trip and Choosing the Clinic
This is the stage where you choose one of the clinics and doctors we offer you according to your needs, and also where we arrange the date and trip plan that suits you upon your preferred clinic/doctor.
3. Final Consultation with Your Surgeon
When you arrive at the clinic, you will have a face-to-face consultation with your kidney transplant surgeon. Everything about your surgery will be discussed between you and your surgeon during this consultation. The surgeon will ask you some questions to try to understand your expectations and goals better and also make you understand what you should expect from your treatment and the potential risks or complications of the procedure. Certain medical conditions will determine whether a candidate can receive a transplant. Various laboratory analyses will be performed to ensure the compatibility of the donor and the recipient. You will also decide together the individualized surgical and recovery plan that can be followed, especially during the first 24 to 48 hours after the surgery. The surgeon will explain the whole process clearly and try to simulate it as much as possible, in order you to feel comfortable and well-prepared
4. Medical Examinations
Before the surgery begins, your surgeon will conduct physical and blood tests to make sure that you are in acceptable health status for the surgery. Before the transplant, a lymphocyte compatibility test is carried out in the laboratory, to verify that the patient does not have antibodies developed during a first transplant, a transfusion or a pregnancy. These antibodies would be able to react against the graft and cause acute rejection.
The surgery usually lasts about three hours. The surgeon makes an incision in the lower part of one side of your abdomen to transplant the new kidney into your body. Sick kidneys are left in place unless there is a risk of infection or high blood pressure.
The new kidney is introduced into the lower abdomen and connected to the bladder. The vessels are then sutured. The blood can then be filtered again by the kidney, which performs its purifying function. Sometimes it takes a few weeks for the kidney to start working again and dialysis must be continued during this time.
Some people have priority, especially people in emergency situations, those for whom it is more difficult to find a compatible kidney (because they have developed antibodies or are of a rare group) and children.
What Should I Expect from Kidney Transplant?
A hospitalization of at least a week (sometimes more) is necessary after the intervention. The very demanding diet (without salt and potassium) necessary in the case of hemodialysis can be abandoned, but a healthy diet is essential, in particular avoiding very salty foods. After the first moments, the transplant recipient feels much better after the transplant.
Why Do Kidney Transplant Patients Receive Immunosuppressive Therapy?
You should take immunosuppressant (anti-rejection) medications not only for the kidney but after any organ transplant procedure. Because these drugs help prevent your immune system from rejecting (attacking) the donor organ. Usually, this therapy is taken for a lifetime to avoid complications and to ensure that the transplanted kidney works well for a long time.
What If The Transplanted Kidney Stops Working?
When the transplanted kidney stops working, dialysis becomes essential again, but the patient can again be a candidate for a transplant. The transplanted kidney is not necessarily removed. The average lifespan of graft is a dozen years, which requires several transplants in a lifetime.
Our team will dedicate their effort and time to help you choose the clinic best for you. Our goal is not just to find ‘a doctor’ for you, but to find ‘the right doctor’.