Kidney Transplant

Evaluation & Treatment


Step 1: Evaluation


A kidney transplant evaluation for potential recipients is extensive. It requires many tests and examinations to determine your need and it is different for each patient. We will be there with you every step of the way, informing you of your test results and the next steps. You will meet with your entire medical team, which includes your kidney physician, your surgeon, your nurse coordinator, nurse practitioners, physical therapists, social workers, psychologists, clinical pharmacists, dietitians, financial coordinators and transplant chaplains. They will instruct you on the various steps in the transplant process. 



What you can do





Step 2: While You Wait


Waiting for a donor can be a stressful time for recipients because you don’t know how long you will have to wait. We will work with your kidney doctor, or nephrologist, to ensure that you remain healthy enough for surgery. You will continue dialysis treatment and should follow your individualized exercise plan and dietary guidelines. You also should keep scheduled appointments so the medical team can gauge your state of health and assess any changes. It is extremely important during this time that you keep your medical team  informed of any changes in address, insurance, phone numbers or vacation plans. Your transplant team must be able to reach you within a moment’s notice so they must always have current contact numbers for you.



What you can do





  • Take care of your health.

  • Keep your appointments.

  • Keep your medical team informed. Call (708) 327-4TXP, (708-327-4897).

  • Learn more about kidney transplantation with our Frequently Asked Questions.

Step 3: Operation


Then the good news arrives! A kidney has been offered. Your medical team will quickly make the arrangements for the surgery and your hospital stay. Your nurse coordinator will inform you and your family about where you should go and when you should arrive. You will undergo a few final tests and then go into surgery, which usually lasts about 3 to 4 hours. Your existing kidneys, or native kidneys, will be left in place. They are located near the back of your abdomen and are not removed unless it is absolutely necessary. If your doctors decide that removing a native kidney is the best course of action, they will discuss the medical reasons with you. The transplanted kidney will be placed in your pelvis and the incision will be about 8 inches long.



What you can do





  • Follow all instructions from your nurses and doctors.

  • Communicate any concerns you may have with your medical team. Call (708) 327-4TXP, (708-327-4897).

  • Learn more about kidney transplantation with our Frequently Asked Questions.

Step 4: Recovery


Doctors and nurses will monitor you very closely after surgery. You will also need to do some deep breathing exercises and coughing to help prevent lung complications. If needed, physical therapists will work with you to help you get up and walking. Most recipients go home 3 to 4 days after surgery. Our medical staff will send you home with medication.


It is EXTREMELY IMPORTANT that recipients take the anti-rejection medication as instructed. You will need to take this medication for the rest of your life. Kidney recipients are followed quite closely during the first year after transplant surgery, which will include frequent lab and clinic visits along with biopsies, as needed, to help identify any rejection. Your coordinator will set up appointments for you 1 to 2 weeks after the operation, then 1 month, 1 year and 2 years later.



What you can do





  • Take your anti-rejection medication on a routine schedule.

  • Keep lab and doctors’ appointments.

  • Follow your medical team’s guidelines on diet and exercise.

  • Communicate any concerns you may have with your medical team. Call (708) 327-4TXP, (708-327-4897).

  • Learn more about kidney transplantation with our Frequently Asked Questions.

 

Questions?

For an appointment or more information, call (708) 327-4TXP, (708-327-4897), to speak with a Transplant representative.

Ready to Get Started?

For an appointment or more information, call (708) 327-4TXP, (708-327-4897), to speak with a Transplant representative.

Common Questions

Who pays for the operation?

Insurance, whether private, Medicare or Medicaid, will pay for the recipient's evaluation and surgery. The recipient's insurance also pays for the evaluation and surgery for a living donor. Please contact your insurance for specific levels of coverage. Read more of our Frequently Asked Questions.

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