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A Kidney Transplant Could Be the Key to a Healthier, Longer, More Fulfilling Life

Kidney Transplant Program at Memorial by Memorial Healthcare System on YouTube

Kidneys act as blood filters for the human body. Normally, kidneys filter approximately half a cup of blood every minute. During the filtration process, the kidneys remove wastes and extra water, resulting in urine. Sometimes, because of certain underlying kidney diseases, they fail to filter the blood correctly. This can lead to kidney failure.

For patients with kidney failure, there are two treatment options: dialysis or a kidney transplant. Dialysis replaces some kidney functions by filtering blood, which in most dialysis patients is accomplished with the use of an external dialysis machine three times a week. Each session lasts three to four hours and can have a profound negative impact on quality of life.

More importantly, patients who continue to remain on dialysis live with kidney failure and therefore are at constant risk of developing complications. Some but not all of these complications include chronic fatigue, anemia, loss of taste and appetite, nausea, vomiting and generalized itching. More serious complications are heart failure, heart attack (myocardial infarction) and stroke.

The ideal option for patients with kidney failure is a kidney transplant, preferably from a living donor. A successful kidney transplant can offer a cure for kidney disease.

Basit Javaid, MD, Memorial Transplant Institute's Medical Director of Adult Kidney Transplant, emphasizes that for patients with advanced kidney disease and an impending need for dialysis, the best option is a preemptive kidney transplant - meaning to undergo a kidney transplant without undergoing dialysis.

He adds that time spent on dialysis can have a negative impact on kidney transplant outcomes. "The longer a person remains on dialysis prior to undergoing a transplant, the higher the risk of complications," Dr. Javaid said. "To counter the risk of these complications, our goal at Memorial is to eliminate or minimize exposure to dialysis for all patients in need of a transplant to the extent possible. Ideally, our hope for all transplant candidates would be to undergo a kidney transplant

preemptively or with as limited time possible on maintenance dialysis to minimize complications and maximize longevity."

Seyed Ghasemain, MD, Chief of Abdominal Transplant Surgery, believes kidney transplantation remains the best treatment for patients with severe chronic kidney disease.

"A successful kidney transplant can result in an improvement in a patient's longevity, as well as positively impact a patient's quality of life. Although the best outcomes are generally achieved through a living donor kidney transplant, for patients with chronic kidney disease, a successful deceased donor kidney transplant also results in a remarkable improvement in both longevity and overall quality of life and most experience a doubling of life expectancy at a minimum when compared to living on dialysis," Dr. Ghasemain said.

In Broward County, Memorial Transplant Institute is the only center that offers kidney transplants for children as well as adults. Memorial has the distinction of being one of about a hundred centers nationwide and one of only four in Florida participating in the National Kidney Registry. Medical experts from Joe DiMaggio Children's Hospital and Memorial work as a team to coordinate care from childhood through adulthood. Patients receive a lifetime of continuous care and support in the most seamless manner possible.

Memorial also has one of the shortest times to transplant and highest kidney transplant rates in Florida, based on the Scientific Registry of Transplant Recipients January 2022 data with excellent pre- and post-transplant outcomes.

A leader in innovation, Memorial offers the most comprehensive transplant services of any leading transplant center in the country, including laparoscopic living donor surgery, paired kidney donation, transplantation across HLA incompatibility, ABO incompatibility, and other immunological and physiological barriers.

The transplant team at Memorial is among the most experienced in the region and is committed to providing kidney transplantation for everyone, including patients deemed too high risk to undergo transplantation by other transplant centers.

Click Here For more information on kidney transplants at Memorial.

Content provided by Memorial Healthcare System

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