Kidney transplant is an invasive procedure in which a healthy kidney of a donor is transplanted into a patient (recipient) that has suffered from kidney failure.
Living Donor - A person alive who is donating the kidney
Cadaveric Donor - Kidney of a dead person, who donates a kidney after his death.
Kidney Transplant Process
Pre-transplant process – you will be referred to pre-transplant clinic where doctors will evaluate best match for you. If the donor is available, doctors will do blood work of the donor and the recipient to understand if the transplant will be successful.
Surgery – The donor will undergo a laparoscopic surgery while the recipient will have to go through a complex surgery of few hours which could be life-threating. The doctors will ask you to sign a consent form in case of death they will not be responsible. However, major transplants have been successfully performed. This should not be a major concern.
Post-transplant care – Right after the transplant you will be on kidney anti-rejection drugs for rest of your life. These are also known as immunosuppressants. This is needed because a human body does not accept any foreign organ. The immune system will try to reject it. Immunosuppressants or anti-rejection drugs will lower the strength of immune system.
If you eat healthy food, your chances of saving transplanted kidney from rejection are much higher.
A living donor kidney on an average can function for more than 25 years if you maintain a healthy life style.