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What are the advantages of living kidney donation?

Living kidney donation gives people on the waitlist for a transplant another option to waiting for a deceased donor organ. There are many advantages to living kidney donation, like:

Time to plan
The surgery can be scheduled when both the donor and the recipient are in the best health possible. The donor and recipient are aware of the transplant date in advance so they can be prepared.

Better donor organ survival rates
Kidney transplants from living donors are more successful than from deceased donors. There is a lower chance of rejection from living donors. Living donor transplants are usually done with less time between the time when the kidney is removed from the donor, and when it is transplanted into the recipient. This can mean longer and better kidney function.

Less waiting
The length of time to get a kidney is much shorter when the organ comes from a living donor than a deceased donor. This is better for the recipient because it means is less time on dialysis. It also means the transplant can be done when the person is in good health. This also shortens the waitlist, which is good for everybody waiting for a transplant.

Avoiding dialysis
You can have a transplant much earlier in the course of the disease with a living kidney donor. That means you might be able to have your transplant before you need dialysis. This is called a pre-emptive transplant.

Better quality of life
After the transplant, the recipient no longer needs to restrict their diet and fluids. They also will not have to deal with dialysis or the fatigue it can cause. A kidney from a living donor usually begins working right away. The living donor can help save the life of another person, which can be a very positive experience.

Last updated on: December 5th, 2016