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Kidney Transplant

Kidney Transplant Surgery

A new kidney, renewed health

Recipients and their donors often wonder what happens during the transplant surgery. The transplant center staff will explain this in detail, answering any questions you may have. In general, both the donor and the recipient are admitted to the hospital the morning of the surgery. On average, the surgery takes from two to four hours and patients spend three to seven days in the hospital.

What happens during surgery?

Shortly before going into surgery, medicine is given to the patients to help them relax. A general anesthetic is then given. The donor and recipient are in adjacent operating rooms.  The transplant surgeon removes the kidney from the donor and prepares it for transplant into the recipient.  There, the surgeon connects the renal artery and vein of the new kidney to the recipient’s artery and vein. This creates blood flow through the kidney, which makes urine. The ureter, or tube coming down from the donor kidney, is sewn into the bladder. Usually, the new kidney will start working right away. Sometimes, it takes several days for the donor kidney to “wake up.”

Recovering from surgery

Transplant patients usually return to normal activities within 4 to 8 weeks. Until then, there should be no heavy lifting while recovering. As you might expect, there will be medicines to take, which will help ensure your new kidney functions as it should. It’s important to understand the purpose of the medicines, as well as the side effects you may experience.

For additional information or to begin a kidney transplant evaluation, call .

Kidney Transplant

Surgical teams at Barnes-Jewish, Johns Hopkins and Integris Baptist successfully completed the first six-way, multihospital, domino kidney transplant.

 

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