Kidney transplant: Here is what you need to know

Kidney transplant: Here is what you need to know

Kidney transplant: Here is what you need to know

By Davis Muli

As the world marks kidney day, it is estimated that 850 million people worldwide have kidney diseases from various causes. Chronic kidney disease (CKD) causes at least 2.4 million deaths per year and is now the 6th fastest growing cause of death.

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With this year’s theme being “Kidney Health for Everyone Everywhere”, it is important to understand that kidney diseases are curable. One of the most effective cures is undergoing a transplant.

A kidney transplant has been described as a surgical procedure to place a healthy kidney from a live or deceased donor into a person whose kidneys no longer function properly. Here in Kenya, the surgical procedure was conducted more than 14 times in a raw for the first time in 2010 by doctors from Kenyatta National Hospital.

Since then, Kenyans who are in need of the procedure have cancelled a number of trips to India or South Africa for kidney surgeries. This has greatly been attributed to the reduced prices of the procedure. According to an article by Daily Nation, With Sh300,000, a person can do a kidney transplant at Kenyatta compared to over Sh1.5 million in India.

So, what really happens during a Kidney transplant?

Kidney transplant involves three stages;

  • First, an incision (cut) is made in your lower abdomen (tummy), through which the donated kidney is put into place. Your own kidneys will usually be left where they are, unless they’re causing problems such as pain or infection.
  • Second, nearby blood vessels are attached to the blood vessels of the donated kidney. This is to provide the donated kidney with the blood supply it needs to function properly.
  • Finally, the ureter (the tube that carries urine from the kidney to the bladder) of the donated kidney is connected to your bladder.

After the operation, you’ll immediately begin treatment with medication designed to prevent your immune system from rejecting your new kidney.

Most transplanted kidneys will start working immediately, particularly if they come from a living donor, although sometimes they may take a few days or weeks to work properly. If this is the case, you’ll need to have dialysis during this time.

It is important to always consult with a medical doctor and to take everything you read online with a pinch of salt.

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