Transplant surgeries are procedures in which a diseased or damaged organ is replaced by a healthy organ that may be donated by a living or deceased individual. Kidney transplants, which are one of the most common types of transplant procedures in the U.S., help individuals living with kidney failure. If your surgeon has informed you that you could benefit from kidney transplant surgery, there are some steps you can take to get ready for the procedure.
Undergo a Transplant Evaluation
Once you’ve been referred for a transplant surgery, you’ll need to undergo a comprehensive evaluation. You can expect a physical exam, review of your medical history, and psychosocial assessment. You’ll also likely have a nutritional consultation to discuss healthy lifestyle modifications for the surgery. You can expect many different consultations with various specialists and many different tests before the surgery.
Update Your Health Information
If there is no kidney readily available to transplant, you’ll be placed on a transplant waiting list. The length of time you may spend waiting for a kidney is unpredictable – it may be months or years. You’ll need to stay in touch with the transplant team during this time to update your health information and submit blood samples.
Remain Constantly Accessible by Phone
While waiting for a kidney, it’s imperative that you remain accessible by phone 24 hours per day, seven days per week. If your contact information changes, you must immediately update your info with the transplant team.
Pack for the Hospital
Once a kidney becomes available, time is of the essence. You’ll need to rush to the hospital as soon as you get the call. It’s important that you remain packed for a hospital stay at all times. You may wish to place a bag with all the items that you’ll need in the trunk of your car or by your front door. Pack clothing and other personal items, in addition to your medications.
The Transplant Institute at Tulane Medical Center is a leader in providing kidney transplants. Our medical center in New Orleans also specializes in orthopedic surgery, heart surgery, back surgery, and robotic surgery, and offers extensive cardiology services. If you would like a referral to our Transplant Institute, a cardiologist, or another specialist, you may call (504) 302-0664.