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Kidney transplants are the second most common transplant operation in the United States (over 16,500 cases per year - cornea transplants are first). Compared to heart, lung, or liver transplants, it is an easier and less complicated operation.

The United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS) is the private organization that runs the US transplant system under a contract with the federal government.

Despite continuing advances in medicine and technology, the demand for kidneys drastically outstrips the number of donors. In 2013, there were over 96,000 persons on waiting lists for kidney transplants in the US.

There are two types of kidney transplantation: cadaveric and living donor. Cadaver organs are distributed to those on a waiting list based on criteria set forth by UNOS. Live donor transplantation has become increasingly common, due in large part to the success of the procedure and the shortage of cadaveric organs. Living donation allows the immediate transplantation of kidneys into recipients so operations can be scheduled electively once a suitable living donor has been identified. This avoids the long waiting times encountered with cadaveric donation. A new procedure, the laparoscopic nephrectomy, has greatly reduced the trauma and recovery period for a living donor.

Kidney transplant recipients usually must take immunosuppressants, or anti-rejection drugs, for the rest of their lives. Medicare coverage for these medications is currently limited to three years, but federal legislation has been introduced to extend coverage. Immunosuppressant medications run on average between $1,000 - $1,200 monthly.

Warning: Changes should never be made in a patient's treatment or care based solely on the information found here.  All patients have unique healthcare concerns and considerations and these must all be taken into account before any changes can be safely made.  All medical and therapeutic decisions must come from a qualified health care provider.  Read RenalWEB's Legal Disclaimer before proceeding.

  NEWS and LATEST ARTICLES

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Free, Full-Text Articles from Pediatric Nephrology - April 2019

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Seeking New Answers to Old Questions About Public Reporting of Transplant Program Performance in the United States - (Registration required, but free.) Article from American Journal of Transplantation via Medscape Nephrology. - March 7, 2019

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Articles in Press Abstracts from Journal Of Renal Nutrition - March 6, 2019

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Timing of Medicare Loss May Affect Long-Term Success of Kidney Transplantation - Press release and Early View abstract from the American Journal of Transplantation. - March 6, 2019

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Use of Ambulatory Blood Pressure Monitoring in Kidney Transplant Recipients - Free, full-text, Advance Article from NDT. - March 5, 2019

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A Randomized Controlled Trial of Explore Transplant at Home to Improve Transplant Knowledge and Decision-Making for CKD 3-5 Patients at Kaiser Permanente Southern California - Free, Open Access article from BMC Nephrology. - March 4, 2019

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Pre-Existing Malignancies in Renal Transplant Candidates — Time to Reconsider Waiting Times - Advance Articles Abstract from NDT. - March 4, 2019

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An Open-Label, Randomized Trial Indicates That Everolimus with Tacrolimus or Cyclosporine Is Comparable to Standard Immunosuppression in de novo Kidney Transplant Patients - Free, Open Access, Articles in Press from Kidney International. - March 1, 2019

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Multiple Myeloma and Kidney Transplantation: the Beginning of a New Era - Free, full-text, Advance Article from Clinical Kidney Journal. - March 1, 2019

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Forced Organ Harvesting: Overseas Patients Flocking to China for Transplants - Article from The Epoch Times. - March 1, 2019

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Blood Test Could Give Two Month Warning of Kidney Transplant Rejection - Press release from NIHR Biomedical Research Centre at Guy's and St Thomas' and King's College London. - February 28, 2019

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Kidney Transplantation: an Attractive and Cost-Effective Alternative for Older Patients? — A Cost-Utility Study - Free, full-text, Advance Article from Clinical Kidney Journal. - February 28, 2019

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Free, Full-Text Articles from American Journal of Transplantation - February 27, 2019

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Research Suggests That Medications for Kidney Transplants Increase Risk of Skin Cancer - Press release from the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland. - February 27, 2019

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Impact of Distance between Donor and Recipient Hospitals on Cadaveric Kidney Transplantation Outcomes - First Online abstract from Clinical and Experimental Nephrology. - February 27, 2019

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'I Don't Want to Die': 380 Walter Reed Patients Are Looking for Kidney Donors - Article from Military Times. - February 26, 2019

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In UK, Organ Donor Law Change Named after Max and Keira - Article from the BBC. - February 26, 2019

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Long-Term Outcome of Third, Fourth and Fifth Kidney Transplantation: Technical Aspects and Immunological Challenges - Free, full-text, Advance Article from Clinical Kidney Journal. - February 25, 2019

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Association Between Serum Prealbumin Level and Outcomes in Prevalent Kidney Transplant Recipients - Article in Press abstract from Journal of Renal Nutrition. - February 25, 2019

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Generic Immunosuppressants Have Reduced Costs After Organ Transplantation - Press release and free, full-text, Published Ahead of Print CJASN articles. - February 22, 2019

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Delhi Doctor Is Overseas Boss of Kidney Mafia - Article from The Times of India. - February 20, 2019

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Development and Evaluation of Dedicated Low Clearance Transplant Clinics for Patients with Failing Kidney Transplants - Abstract from Journal of Renal Care. - February 20, 2019

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Fluorescing Urine Signals Organ Transplant Rejection, Could Replace Needle Biopsies - Press release from Georgia Institute of Technology. - February 19, 2019

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Two Colorado Men's Experiences on Kidney Donor List Indicative of State's Long Wait Times - Article from The Denver Post. - February 17, 2019

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Accepted Articles Abstracts from American Journal of Transplantation - February 15, 2019

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National Kidney Foundation Applauds Congressional Champions for Legislation to Protect Living Organ Donors - Press release. - February 14, 2019

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Health Professional–Identified Barriers to Living Donor Kidney Transplantation: A Qualitative Study - Free, Open Access article from Canadian Journal of Kidney Health and Disease. - February 13, 2019

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Renal Physicians Association Voices Concern about Impact of Part D Changes for Transplant Patients - Article from Healio. - February 13, 2019

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The VA Transplant Program: A Rebuttal to Criticism and a Look to the Future - Accepted Article abstract from American Journal of Transplantation. - February 12, 2019

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Engineered Miniature Kidneys Come of Age - Press release from Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard. - February 11, 2019

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Ovarian Reserve in an Egyptian Cohort with End-Stage Kidney Disease on Hemodialysis and after Successful Kidney Transplantation: a Prospective Study - First Online Abstract from International Urology And Nephrology. - February 8, 2019

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How an Economist’s Idea To Create Kidney Transplant Chains Has Saved Lives - 9-minute audio/video and transcript from NPR. - February 7, 2019

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Coming Soon! Transplantpro.org Is Merging with Unos.org - Press release. - February 6, 2019

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Scientific Registry of Transplant Recipients (SRTR) — Improved Website Launched - Press release. - February 6, 2019

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Variation in Nonmelanoma Skin Cancer Incidence by Treatment Modality Among Patients Receiving Multiple Kidney Transplants - New Online abstract from JAMA Dermatology. - February 6, 2019

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Call for Retraction of 400 Scientific Papers Amid Rears Organs Came from Chinese Prisoners - Article from The Guardian (UK). Free, full-text article from BMJ Open. - February 5, 2019

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Developing an Artificial Kidney with Dr. Morteza Ahmadi - 25-minute YouTube video that was part of the Demystifying Medicine Seminar Series in 2017. Dr. Ahmadi founded Qidni Labs in Canada in 2014. - June 6, 2017

blue ball Latest transplant news from the United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS)
blue ball Kidney Transplant news stories from Yahoo! News - Continually Updated!
 
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  ANTI-REJECTION DRUG INFORMATION

blue ball Azathioprine ("Imuran") - Drug Info from Medline Plus. National Library of Medicine PubMED search results for azathioprine and kidney transplant Continually Updated!
Corticosteroids ("Prednisone" and many others) - Drug Info from The MedMaster™ Patient Drug Information database. National Library of Medicine PubMED search results for corticosteroids and kidney transplant Continually Updated! Search results for prednisone Continually Updated!
Cyclosporine ("Sandimmune" or "Neoral") - Drug Info from Medline Plus. National Library of Medicine PubMED search results for cyclosporine and kidney transplant Continually Updated!
Mycophenolate ("CellCept") - Drug Info from Medline Plus. National Library of Medicine PubMED search results for mycophenolate and kidney transplant Continually Updated!
blue ball Pycnogenol ("Zenapax®") - Drug Info from Medline Plus. National Library of Medicine PubMED search results for daclizumab and kidney transplant Continually Updated!
Sirolimus ("Rapamune®") - Drug Info from Medline Plus. National Library of Medicine PubMED search results for sirolimus and kidney transplant Continually Updated!
Tacrolimus ("Prograf" or FK506) - Drug Info from Medline Plus. National Library of Medicine PubMED search results for tacrolimus and kidney transplant Continually Updated!
 

  WEB RESOURCES

blue ball Latest Scientific Journal Articles on Kidney Transplantation
blue ball Alliance for Paired Donation web site
Bienvenido a Infórmate - kidney transplantation information for Hispanic/Latino patients from the National Kidney Foundation
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Booklet Advises Parents of Pediatric Transplant Patients - Resource (35-page pdf) from UNOS Transplant Living. - 2018

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Brochure Addresses Patients' Questions about Transplant Candidate Kidney Evaluation and Listing - PDF Resource from the United Network for Organ Sharing

Center and OPO Specific Reports from the Scientific Registry of Transplant Recipients web site
blue ball newDeveloping an Artificial Kidney with Dr. Morteza Ahmadi - 25-minute YouTube video that was part of the Demystifying Medicine Seminar Series in 2017. Dr. Ahmadi founded Qidni Labs in Canada in 2014.
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Evaluation of Kidney Donors: Core Curriculum 2018 - Free, Full-Text, Articles in Press from American Journal Of Kidney Disease - January 2018

Financial Assistance for Living Donors web site
The Gift that Heals: Stories of hope, renewal and transformation through organ and tissue donation - book by Reg Green
Guidelines for Preventing Transmission of Human Immunodeficiency Virus Through Transplantation of Human Tissue and Organs from the CDC - May 20, 1994
Help Hope Live web site
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How the Immune System Can Make Getting an Organ Transplant Trickier - Mayo Clinic Minute video. - January 29, 2019

How the Transplant Waiting List Works - Article from the Renal Support Network - April 2012
blue ball Hundreds of Interlaced Fingers: A Kidney Doctor's Search for the Perfect Match - A young, hopeful doctor's memoir (book) --an unforgettable love story and an informative journey into the world of medicine and kidney transplantation that ultimately asks: What does it mean to let go of something that you love, even if it is life itself?

The Jewish Kidney & Transplant Support Center - Advice and support for kidney transplant and dialysis patients

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Kidney Transplantation: The Patient’s Guide - KidneyTalk podcast from Renal Support Network. - August 15, 2018

Kidney/Pancreas Transplant Program from the Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions
Kidney Transplant  web sites from Yahoo!
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Kidney Transplant eBook - by Dr. Leonardo V. Riella - September 2016

Living Kidney Donor Network
Living Kidney Donor Search
Living Kidney Donor Search Tools and Tips web site
Living Donors Online Message Board discussion page
Medical Complications of Kidney Transplantation (Hardcover) by Claudio Ponticelli (Editor) - January 2008
National Donor Memorial web site
National Foundation for Transplants web site
National Kidney Registry web site
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National Living Donor Assistance Center - Website developed by Transplant Informatics Institute, a subsidiary of UNOS.

National Service Framework for Renal Services: Part One - Dialysis and transplantation - Department of Health web site

Organ Donation Toolbox - from the Organ Donation and Transplantation Alliance web site

Organdonor.gov video explains donation, transplantation processes

The Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network (OPTN) weekly updated Waiting Lists for transplants.
blue ball new OPTN / SRTR 2017 Annual Report: Introduction and OPTN/SRTR 2017 Annual Data Report: Kidney - Annual report from the U.S. Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network and the Scientific Registry of Transplant Recipients.
Organ Transplant from the University of Southern California web site
Pediatric Transplantation web site
Pregnancy After Transplant from the Transplant Living web site
Influenza and Transplant Recipients: Ways To Prevent And Treat - Conversations in Transplantation from the American Society of Transplantation - November 2010
Q&A on Living Donation from the NKF web site
Questions About Kidney Transplantation from TransWeb.org web site
blue ball Renal Transplantation - this is a growing library of key high-impact articles in nephrology, chosen by UKidney's contributors as suggested reading for nephrology trainees and practitioners.
The Scientific Registry of Transplant Recipients (SRTR) web site.
Top 10 Myths About Donation & Transplantation from TransWeb.org web site
Transplantation and Organ and Tissue Donors and Transplant Recipients from the NKF web site.
TransplantLiving - the patient's connection to the transplant community from UNOS
Update: Investigations of West Nile Virus Infections in Recipients of Organ Transplantation and Blood Transfusion - from MMWR - September 20, 2002
UNOS Corporate Annual Report from the United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS)
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UNOS Transplant Pro - website for transplant professionals

blue ball What Every Parent Needs to Know - booklet advises parents of pediatric transplant patients produced by the OPTN/UNOS Patient Affairs Committee
Who is Eligible for Medicare? from the The Official U.S. Government Site for Medicare Information
 
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  ESSENTIALS AND CLASSICS

blue ball Evaluation of Kidney Donors: Core Curriculum 2018 from the American Journal of Kidney Disease
blue ball Transplantation Fact Sheet (pdf) from the American Nephrology Nurses’ Association
European Best Practice Guideline for Transplantation Part 1 and European Best Practice Guideline for Transplantation Part 2 - guidelines endorsed by the European Renal Association-European Dialysis and Transplant Association (ERA-EDTA)
Treatment Methods for Kidney Failure: Kidney Transplantation from the National Institute of Diabetes & Digestive & Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)
End-Stage Renal Disease: Choosing a Treatment That's Right for You: Transplantation from the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)
HLA Matching from the University of Michigan Medical Center.
 
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  KDIGO™ -  Kidney Disease: Improving Global Outcomes
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Kidney Disease Improving Global Outcomes (KDIGO) web site

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  PUBMED SEARCHES

kidney transplant Continually Updated!
organ donor and kidney Continually Updated!
renal transplant and HLA matching Continually Updated!
kidney transplant and complications Continually Updated!
kidney transplant and rejection Continually Updated!
 
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  LAPAROSCOPIC NEPHRECTOMY

Live Doner Laparoscopic Nephrectomy For Kidney Transplantation - article from the University of Southern California Kidney Transplant Program.

Here is a listing of articles on the laparoscopic nephrectomy procedure from the latest scientific journals (PubMed search).

 
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  NON-DIRECTED DONATION AND "SWAPS"

 
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  STATISTICS

blue ball U.S. Facts About Kidney Transplantation from the Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network (OPTN) web site
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Organ Donation and Transplantation Dashboard resource available on the Health Resources & Services Administration (HRSA) website

blue ball OPTN / SRTR 2016 Annual Report: Transplant Data - Annual report from the U.S. Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network and the Scientific Registry of Transplant Recipients.
blue ball Transplant Statistics: Center-Specific Reports from the Scientific Registry of Transplant Recipients (SRTR) web site
 
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  UPCOMING EVENTS

blue ball Listing of North American Transplant Coordinators Organization (NATCO) Meetings
 
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  TRANSPLANT CENTERS

blue ball US Transplant Centers - from the OPTN web site
blue ball Transplant Statistics: Center-Specific Reports from the Scientific Registry of Transplant Recipients (SRTR) web site
 
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  XENOTRANSPLANTATION, BIOTECH, AND STEM CELL RESEARCH

blue ball FDA Guidance for Industry on Xenotransplantation from the U.S. Food & Drug Administration
blue ball International Xenotransplantation Association. web site
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Kidney Xenotransplantation — Steps toward Clinical Application - Free, full-text, perspective piece from the Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology. - February 2019

blue ball U.S. Public Health Service Guideline on Infectious Disease Issues in Xenotransplantation from the Morbidity & Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR) - August 24, 2001
blue ball Stem Cell Information - from the National Institutes of Health
blue ball Stem Cell Research - Full coverage page from Yahoo
blue ball Beyond Transplants: Growing Organs in the Lab from Popular Mechanics
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Interspecies Organogenesis-Derived Tissues for Transplantation - free, full-text articles from Transplantation - July 2017

blue ball 24-minute Video from The Kidney Project Facebook Page on their Implantable Artificial Kidney - This is a UCSF project headed by Shuvo Roy
 
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  DISCUSSION FORUM

blue ball General Nursing Discussion Forum - RenalWEB Discussion Forum
 
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  INPUT / SUGGESTIONS

blue ball E-mail to RenalWEB on the Transplantation Topic
 
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