All patients with Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) are entitled to evaluation for transplant candidacy at St. Joseph Hospital Kidney Transplant Center. You or a loved one may be referred by a physician or a dialysis center. You may also refer yourself. Each patient is evaluated individually to determine candidacy for transplantation. Our first responsibility is to recommend what is best for each patient. In some cases, patients' conditions may be worsened by attempts at transplantation. However, for many patients, transplantation can offer a higher quality of life for a longer period of time.
The St. Joseph Hospital Kidney Transplant Center has a history of tackling surgical and medical challenges, often accepting patients turned down by other centers. We have programs for transplantation of sensitized patients and those who are ABO blood type incompatible with their donor. Our transplant success and patient survival rates, among the highest in the nation, are a testament to the expertise of our skilled surgeons and highly qualified staff.
Candidates for kidney transplantation suffer from CKD or are approaching dependence on renal replacement therapy (dialysis). There is no age limit, though usually patients are younger than 70 years. Each patient at St. Joseph Hospital Kidney Transplant Center is evaluated individually to determine candidacy.
It is important to evaluate a patient's overall health and risk factors to help ensure transplant success. Kidney transplantation is usually not recommended for patients who have the following conditions:
- Active cancer, ongoing serious infection, or active gastric ulcer disease
- Severe, non-correctable heart or peripheral vascular disease
- Current drug or alcohol abuse
- Immune deficiency disease
- Psychosocial conditions or situations that interfere with post-transplant care or medication management
Considerations When Selecting a Transplant Center
When selecting a hospital for kidney transplantation, it's important to make an informed decision. Look closely at the qualifications and performance of the hospital's program, and be sure to ask the right questions. The program should have favorable outcomes data, such as the results reported by the Scientific Registry of Transplant Recipients (SRTR). And the program should be in good standing with
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS),
The Department of Health Services (DHS) and
The United Network For Organ Sharing (UNOS). You should also ask if the program has received any corrective or disqualifying action from these organizations.
Types of Transplants: Deceased vs. Living Donors
Transplant candidates have two options for obtaining a new kidney: deceased or living donors. Most transplanted kidneys in the US come from deceased donors. However, there are currently many more people on the waiting list than there are available deceased donors. A solution to this shortage is
living donation. Many transplant candidates may have willing living donors and not even know it.