What is a kidney transplant?
A kidney transplant is a surgery done to replace a diseased kidney with a healthy kidney from a donor. The kidney may come from a deceased organ donor or from a living donor. Family members or others who are a good match may be able to donate one of their kidneys. This type of transplant is called a living transplant. People who donate a kidney can live healthy lives with one healthy kidney.
As kidneys become diseased, they lose their ability to function, a condition called end-stage renal disease (ESRD) or kidney failure. Treatments for kidney failure are hemodialysis, a mechanical process to clean the blood of waste products; peritoneal dialysis, in which toxins are removed by passing chemical solutions through the abdomen; and kidney transplant.
None of these options is a cure for kidney failure. But a transplant offers the best prospects, given that the transplanted kidney functions successfully
Normal Kidney Function
- The primary function of the kidney is to make urine and purify the blood. Each kidney removes waste materials, and other chemicals which are not required by the body. Most important functions of the kidney are described below.
- The kidneys are organs whose function is essential to maintain life. Most people are born with two kidneys, located on either side of the spine, behind the abdominal organs and below the rib cage. The kidneys perform several major functions to keep the body healthy.
- Filtration of the blood to remove waste products from normal body functions, passing the waste from the body as urine, and returning water and chemicals back to the body as necessary.
- Regulation of the blood pressure by releasing several hormones.
- Stimulation of production of red blood cells by releasing the hormone erythropoietin.
- The normal anatomy of the kidneys involves two kidney bean shaped organs that produce urine. Urine is then carried to the bladder by way of the ureters. The bladder serves as a storehouse for the urine. When the body senses that the bladder is full, the urine is excreted from the bladder through the urethra.
WHY IS RENAL TRANSPLANTATION DONE?
Renal transplantation is the definitive treatment for patients with end stage renal disease (ESRD). ESRD can be defined as patients who are suffering with chronic kidney disease (CKD) and require regular dialysis or possibility of permanent dialysis requirement is imminent
When the kidneys stop working, renal failure occurs. If this renal failure continues (chronically), end-stage renal disease results, with accumulation of toxic waste products in the body. In this case, either dialysis or transplantation is required.