What You Need to Know About Kidney Transplants
posted by The Live Better Team | January 18, 2017
The kidneys are vital organs in the body responsible for filtering out waste and preventing many infections and basic diseases in the body, and this is a function that the body simply cannot go without. Without this filtration system, the body is exposed to several potential problems.
For this reason, when kidneys lose their ability to function properly, they have to be replaced in a process called a kidney transplant. A kidney transplant involves a healthy kidney from a donor being placed in the body of a person whose kidneys are failing. A transplant can sometimes come from a living donor, or sometimes from a deceased donor.
What causes most kidney failures that require a transplant, and what are the types of transplants and risks associated with them?
In most cases, kidney failure is caused by (and often referred to as) end-stage renal disease. End-stage renal disease happens anytime the kidneys have lost at least 90 percent of their functionality, and have stopped performing the waste filtering function they’re meant for.
End-stage renal disease is generally caused by a few different conditions, which include:
There are three primary types of kidney transplant available:
Kidney transplants are not an end-all cure, and there is no guarantee that they prevent symptoms forever. The main risks, side effects and complications are broken up into three categories:
These are very real risks, but in most cases of kidney failure, the only other option is usually much worse. It’s virtually unheard of for kidney failure to correct itself naturally, and the body cannot survive without at least one functioning kidney. If you have any concerns about your kidney health, or are experiencing kidney failure and need to know about your options, speak with your doctor.
“Kidney Transplant.” The Mayo Clinic. http://www.mayoclinic.org/tests-procedures/kidney-transplant/home/ovc-20203614
“Kidney Transplant.” National Kidney Foundation. https://www.kidney.org/atoz/content/kidneytransnewlease
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a medical professional. You should always consult your doctor before making decisions about your health.