The kidneys' function is to filter the blood. All the blood in our bodies passes through the kidneys several times a day. The kidneys remove wastes, control the body's fluid balance, and regulate the balance of electrolytes. As the kidneys filter blood, they create urine, which collects in the kidneys' pelvis; funnel-shaped structures that drain down tubes called ureters to the bladder.
Each kidney contains around a million units called nephrons, each of which is a microscopic filter for blood. It's possible to lose as much as 90% of kidney function without experiencing any symptoms or problems.
Ascertaining that the Kidney is one of the most vital organs in the human body, a dedicated department has been set up to facilitate and treat any kind of Kidney Disorders. Some of the Kidney Conditions are:
Mostly it is seen that kidney failures account from neglect by the patient. It is suggested that you keep a regular record of health checkups on a monthly or a quarterly basis. Jehangir Hospital provides a wide array of Kidney Treatments ranging between; prescribing simple Antibiotics, Lithotripsy to Peritoneal Dialysis. We specialize in offering services with personal care and focus on building long term relationships.
How do family and friends know when it is time to consider donation?
When a patient loses 90 to 95 percent of his or her kidney function, they are considered to have End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD). Treatment options for patients with ESRD are dialysis (where an artificial kidney machine removes waste from the blood) or a kidney transplant from a living or deceased donor.
Sometimes, a patient with 85 percent loss of kidney function will undergo a transplant which allows them to avoid having to go on dialysis. Kidney patients and their families will discuss the best course of treatment with their doctors.
Who can be a donor?
Donors need to be between the ages of 18 and early 70s and can include parents, children, siblings, other relatives, and friends. An ideal donor should have a genuine interest in donating and a compatible blood type with the recipient. Donors should be in good general health. Donors do not need to be genetically related. Typically, someone who has cancer, diabetes, kidney disease, heart disease, liver disease, sickle cell disease, HIV or hepatitis will not qualify to be a donor. However, these diseases are not all absolute contraindications to donation. Every donor will be considered on an individual basis.
Do some donors have trouble making the decision to donate?
The decision to donate can vary from person to person. Some people make the decision instantly with few worries or concerns. Other people require time to think critically and will talk with close friends or family before deciding whether or not to donate. It is normal for some people to be afraid of donating a kidney as well as to experience guilt about not wanting to be a donor.
Individuals should not, under any circumstances, feel pressured to donate. The only “right” decision is the one that makes the donor feel comfortable. Potential donors are encouraged to speak with the living donor team if they have any questions or concerns about their decision.
What is the first step to becoming a living donor?
If you are interested in being a living donor, you should contact the Living Donor Kidney Program (410-328-5408) to request a questionnaire. Once the questionnaire has been completed it will be reviewed by a nurse coordinator to determine if you may proceed with initial blood testing.
Once your blood type, antigen match, and cross match are known, the living donor nurse coordinator will discuss the results and the donation process with you and answer any questions so that you can make an informed decision about proceeding with donation. This conversation is strictly confidential and is not shared with the recipient. If the donor decides to continue with donation, they must then complete a comprehensive evaluation.
What does the donor evaluation include?
We encourage all donor evaluations to be completed at Jehangir Hospital, Pune. The work-up can often be completed in 1-2 days, though additional testing may be required in some cases.
You will complete a medical history and receive a physical, which includes a blood pressure check, to ensure that you don’t have any concerning health conditions. A series of laboratory and X-ray tests, as well as an EKG, will be completed to screen for kidney function, liver function, hepatitis, heart disease, lung disease and past exposure to viral illness. Urine testing will also be done to make sure that your kidneys function normally. In addition, results from your routine annual health maintenance tests (e.g., pap smear, mammogram, colonoscopy, etc).
A CT anuterized tomography, or CTA) scan will also be completed. During this scan, contgiogram (a comprast is injected into the blood stream through a vein in your arm. The contrast travels to the kidneys and urinary tract while the CTA scan and X-rays are done. These tests help the transplant staff to determine if your urinary tract, kidneys, and the blood vessels leading to the kidneys are normal.
You will also meet with a surgeon and complete a psychosocial evaluation with a clinical social worker. Once all results from the entire evaluation process are available, they will be reviewed by a multidisciplinary committee who decides whether you are able to safely proceed with the donation.
What are the health risks associated with being a donor?
Your surgeon and nurse coordinator will discuss all health risks with you. The risks of donation are similar to those involved with any major surgery, such as bleeding and infection. Death resulting from kidney donation is extremely rare. Current research indicates that kidney donation does not change life expectancy or increase a person’s risks of developing kidney disease or other health problems.
Will giving a kidney affect my lifestyle?
A person can lead an active, normal life with only one kidney. Studies have shown that one kidney is sufficient to keep the body healthy. After recovering from surgery, a donor can work, drive, exercise and participate in sports, though contact sports are not recommended. A donor can continue in all types of occupations. Also, being a donor does not impact a person’s ability to have a child.
If you have no living donor available, the kidney used for your transplant surgery will come from a deceased donor. Regardless of your donor, you’ll still undergo the same thorough evaluation to determine whether you’re a candidate for transplant surgery. You cannot receive a kidney transplant before the completion of all tests and consultations recommended by the Doctor. Once you’re approved for transplant, you’ll be placed on the organ waiting list, at which point you begin to accrue waiting time.
While You Wait
The waiting period often is several years, so you may be asked to undergo periodic testing to remain “active” on the waiting list. You’ll continue to be cared for by your referring physician, and transplant physicians are available for consultation and will become actively involved if necessary.
During the waiting period, the Evaluation Coordinator is available to take your questions, as well as those from your referring physician. The Histocompatibility lab will request regular blood samples to test your antibody levels. Dialysis units are requested to provide monthly medical updates on your health.
Above all, because the waiting period can be extended, it’s important for you to let the transplant team know about any serious changes in your health. Keeping us updated improves the chances of a timely transplantation.
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