There is often a lack of awareness when it comes to kidney problems. People fail to recognize the signs and symptoms and suffer from end-stage kidney disease, eventually requiring kidney transplant. Who is the ideal candidate for a kidney transplant? Who can donate a kidney? In the below article, we have tried to clear all your doubts regarding kidney transplant, with inputs from an expert.
First, let’s understand the roles kidneys play in the body.
Dr Puneet Bhuwania, Consultant Nephrologist, and Transplant Surgeon, Wockhardt Hospitals, Mira Road, explains: The main function of the kidneys is excretion of waste products and toxins from the body. When one is under acute stress, the kidneys take care of the hemoglobin. The kidneys also take care of the Vitamin D levels in the body. If the vitamin D levels are good, then bone health is managed by the kidneys. It also helps to regulate blood pressure, which is generally associated with the heart, and plays a vital role in maintaining blood pressure. A large number of people are having kidney failure and are on dialysis. But there is no treatment option for them other than kidney transplantation to improve the quality of life of patients.
Below, Dr Bhuwania answers some of the FAQS about kidney transplantation.
Q. What is a kidney transplant?
A kidney transplant means when you take an organ that is kidney from one person and give it to the other person who doesn’t have a working kidney. There are 2 types of kidney transplants, the first one is live (one of the family members having two functioning kidneys can donate one to you) and the second one is the cadaver transplant (here the brain-dead patients with functioning organs are donors who give kidneys to the needy ones).
Q. Who needs a kidney transplant?
Those patients who are in stage 5 chronic kidney disease (CKD) or end-stage renal disease (ESRD), when the kidneys are working less than 5 per cent, will require a kidney transplant. Or the ones who are on dialysis will need transplantation to help the kidney survive. The transplant will be a boon for such patients.
Q. Who can donate kidneys?
A kidney can be donated by family members of the patient who are declared fit to donate the organ.
Q. For how long a patient can live after receiving a kidney transplant?
The survival rate of kidney transplant patients is up to 15 years owing to the availability of new medication if taken as per the doctor’s advice.
Q. Will kidney donors face any health issues after donating the organ?
Kidney donors don’t face any health problems and can lead a normal life after donating the organ.
Q. Can women become pregnant after a kidney transplant or donation?
Yes, women can conceive and fulfill their dream of motherhood after a kidney transplant or donation and lead a healthy life. The kidney transplant is done by using the latest modern technology to give a fresh lease of life to kidney patients.