Q: What is live donor kidney
A: Live donor kidney transplantation is a procedure in
which a living donor gives one of his or her kidneys to a person in need of a kidney
Q: Who is a candidate to
receive a kidney transplant from a living donor?
or recipients, are those individuals with kidney disease who have been accepted
and listed as appropriate deceased donor kidney transplant recipients
(recipients of kidneys from deceased donors).
Q: Who can qualify as a
A: Living kidney
donors must meet certain criteria, such as having a
compatible blood type and being between the ages of 18 and 65. They must also
have no serious kidney problems or medical conditions such as diabetes, cancer
or heart disease.
Q: What is the
evaluation process for kidney donors?
A: After initial
screening blood work is received and reviewed, a potential donor is scheduled
for a consult
with a transplant nurse and surgeon. This consult
involves a discussion of the procedure itself, as well as an opportunity for
the donor to ask any questions.
Q: How is the kidney
transplant surgery performed?
A: Simultaneously, two
separate surgical teams perform the kidney donor and recipient surgeries. As one team works
on preparing the recipient for the kidney, the other is working on removing one
of the donor’s kidneys.
Q: How will my family
know what is happening during my kidney surgery?
A: Our family waiting
room is staffed by a nurse liaison who will provide frequent updates to the
families of the recipient and donor throughout the surgery.
Q: How long will I be
in the hospital after kidney surgery?
A: The average donor
will be in the hospital for 2 to 3 days.
Q: Are there any
restrictions for kidney donor recovery after surgery?
A: There will be no
changes to their diet, but they should drink at least two liters of water daily
for the first month after surgery. They may resume sexual activities and are
allowed to consume alcohol in moderation as soon as they receive clearance from
Q: What follow-up
appointments will I need?
A: Organ Procurement
and Transplantation Network (OPTN) requires donors to have follow-up appointments
2 weeks after surgery, then again at 6 months, 12 months, and 24 months. Lahey
also recommends you get physical checkups every year after the 24-month
Breeze is an online program from Lahey to help facilitate organ donations from living donors.