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Kidney Transplant Medications/Side Effects

As a transplant recipient, medications will become a significant part of your life. Our transplant team will help you manage and understand your medications and advise you about any over-the-counter medications you are taking.

After your transplant, you will require anti-rejection medications to suppress your immune system to keep your body from rejecting the transplanted kidney. Because your immune system is suppressed, you will be more prone to infection, especially during the first 3 to 6 months after transplant.
Following surgery, patients usually take:

  • Three types of medication to prevent kidney rejection

  • More and higher doses in the first three months, with reduced amounts over time

  • Medications for other health issues (blood pressure, insulin, etc.)

Side Effects

As with most drugs, transplant medications may cause side effects. Patients may have few or several of these side effects. Typically, each patient’s experience is different and symptoms can be mild to severe.

  • Slight increased risk of infection (urinary tract)

  • Diabetes

  • High blood pressure

  • Cholesterol problems

  • Headaches

  • Tremors

  • Jitters

  • Slight increased risk of cancer (skin, genital, lymphoma)

  • Skin appearance changes (acne, thin skin, bruising, facial hair, loss of hair)

  • Insomnia

  • Depression

  • Mood swings

While you're taking medications, it is important to carefully monitor and report any unusual side effects to your transplant nurse coordinator. Side effects vary by dosage and type of medication. Ask your nurse coordinator or doctor any questions you have about your particular medication.

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

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