Living kidney donation is when a healthy living person decides to donate a kidney to someone who has kidney failure. Living donation can be considered for a family member, friend, co-worker, or even a complete stranger. Kidney donation is a personal decision and should be considered only after being fully informed of the process.
Advantages of RECEIVING a Kidney From a Living Donor:
- There is no need to wait for a deceased donor kidney to become available (most living transplants take place within months of beginning an evaluation).
- The kidney usually begins to work immediately, even in the operating room.
- There are fewer episodes of rejection. As a result, living donor kidneys tend to last longer than deceased donor kidneys.
- Depending on the genetic match, the recipient may be able to take fewer immunosuppressive drugs, therefore minimizing possible side effects.
- Living kidney donor transplants can be scheduled at a convenient time for both donor and recipient. This allows both the donor and the recipient to plan for absences from work and family responsibilities.
Living Kidney Donor Evaluation
The Living Kidney Donor evaluation involves several steps. Potential donors will meet with all members of the living donor team during this process. The team includes physicians, surgeons, nurse coordinators, social workers, dietitians, pharmacists and an Independent Living Donor Advocate. Potential donors are screened carefully to make sure they are healthy and able to donate
Donor Medical Expenses
Donors are not responsible for any expenses related to the testing, surgery or hospitalization for living donation.
Independent Living Donor Advocate
The Independent Donor Advocate (ILDA) is a social worker who has received advanced education to be an independent and specialized advocate for the living donors. The ILDA's role is to make sure the living donors understand the entire living donor process and have had their questions answered. The ILDA will ensure that potential donors receive all the information they need throughout all phases of donation. As a potential living donor, any questions or concerns you may have about the care you receive from the transplant team may be directed to the ILDA.
For more information on the transplant services at UPMC in Central Pa., call our toll-free number at 1-877-778-6110.
Need more information? Call 877-778-6110