Living Kidney Donors FAQs
How do I donate a kidney to my loved one?
Any healthy person over age 18 with compatible blood type and HLA tissue typing may be considered as a possible donor. However, individuals with certain medical conditions may not be able to donate.
The decision to donate a kidney requires careful thought and consideration. The transplant team is available for confidential discussions and questions. Potential donors undergo a thorough evaluation to determine their general health and condition of their kidneys. A transplant surgeon or nephrologist supervises this medical evaluation, ensuring privacy and an objective opinion about the donor's medical suitability to donate a kidney.
How involved is the surgery if I donate a kidney?
The operation to remove a kidney for donation is called a donor nephrectomy. With the patient under general anesthesia, surgeons perform either an open or laparoscopic procedure.
What is laparoscopic donor nephrectomy?
Most patients who donate a kidney qualify for laparoscopic donor nephrectomy, which uses minimally invasive procedures to remove the kidney. Surgeons insert a small scope connected to a video camera into the donor's abdomen. The kidney is detached using additional instruments inserted through very small holes. The kidney is removed through a two- to three-inch incision in the middle of the abdomen. Patients typically experience less postoperative pain and have quicker recovery without harming the function of the donor kidney.
For more information about the transplant program at St. John Medical Center, please call 918-744-2925.
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