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jolinda (@jolinda)

PKD kidneys removed at time of transplant

Transplants | Last Active: Nov 16, 2020 | Replies (25)

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I have a question. Why do so many people feel that they have to have a "live" kidney donor? I did not have a live donor and have had my kidney for over 10 years now. Every time I have my annual transplant check up, I'm told "Keep doing what you are doing. See you next year". I also that a check up every 3 months with my PCP, blood work every 6 weeks and I'm told "Keep doing what you are doing. See you in 3 months". I have changed my lifestyle to the one that takes care of my kidney. I have had other health issues that makes keeping a happy kidney a little more difficult. But I am doing it, I am happy, my body is happy, and we are keeping the kidney happy.

If you do not change your lifestyle after the transplant, whether you have a live donor or not, you may have a happy kidney trying to live in an unhappy new home. I still have the question. Why do so many people feel that they have to have a "live" kidney donor?


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Replies to "I have a question. Why do so many people feel that they have to have a..."

Hi @mlmcg, I'm confident that members here in the Transplant group agree with you. Taking care of one's body and making healthy lifestyle choices honors the gift of life that a donor (deceased or living) has made.

It's also important to note that organ transplant is not always necessitated because someone made poor lifestyle choices. There are many reasons that necessitate organ transplant. Whatever the reason, healthy lifestyle choices post transplant make sense. I see so many of you sharing how you take care of your mind and bodies. You strive to eat well, exercise, drink water, avoid infection, reduce stress, get restorative sleep, etc. In short, you choose health.

To your question about living vs. deceased donor, I'm not the most knowledgeable in this arena. A quick google search revealed this 2013 study. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23746118 The study concluded "deceased donor liver transplantation (DDLT) and living donor liver transplantation (LDLT) have different complication profiles, but comparable hospital stays and survival rates. In areas of deceased donor organ shortages, LDLT offers an excellent alternative to DDLT because it facilitates access to a liver transplant without compromising short- or medium-term recipient outcomes."

@mlmcg congratulations on your new kidney turning 10. It sounds like you are doing a good job keeping it happy in a happy new home! I think one of the reasons folks are looking for living donors (me at least) is because the UNOS waiting list is so long and is getting bigger/longer every day. There is some research that shows that a living donor transplant is more successful and lasts longer than a deceased donor transplant and there are some practical timing/scheduling issues that can be dealt with if the transplant comes from a living donor. Having a living donor also helps shorten the UNOS waiting list for others. As a person of faith I believe the transplant will occur at the right time and from the right source. I am nearly 13 years post pancreas transplant (deceased donor) and am busy trying to keep it happy in a happy body. I’m also trying to stay as healthy as possible while waiting for a kidney transplant. I just returned from annual pretransplant evaluation at Mayo and my listing has been changed to inactive because my kidney function has improved and I’m too healthy for transplant at this time!