What are the benefits of living donor kidney transplant?
- The transplanted kidney lasts longer.
- You don't have to wait as long for a kidney.
- A closer match is possible.
- Transplant is possible before dialysis.
- Surgery is scheduled around you and the donor.
The most important benefit for having a kidney from a living donor is that the living donation can often happen much sooner than a transplant from a deceased donor. The difference can be years earlier. After donor and recipient evaluations are done, and they’re approved for surgery, surgery can then be scheduled.
Another important benefit is that a kidney from a living donor will last longer. It can last 15 to 20 years compared to 10 to 15 years for a deceased kidney donation. This is because the kidney from a living donor is usually healthier than one from a deceased donor. We know the kidney is healthy because of all the tests that are done on the donor to make sure the donor is healthy and their kidneys are working very well.
Having a transplant before dialysis starts is called pre-emptive transplant. It’s the best option. Research has shown that people live longer and their transplant lasts longer if they can get a transplant before starting dialysis.
With a living donor, surgery can be planned to happen at the best time for both the donor and the recipient. This helps everyone make plans for work, travel, and family duties. There’s also a better chance of a more precise match between a living donor and the recipient.