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A kidney transplant is the best treatment if you have end-stage kidney disease, as it offers the most normal life and an increased life-expectancy compared to dialysis. Kidney transplantation involves an operation to provide you with a kidney from a living or deceased donor. It is usually unnecessary to remove your failed kidneys; your transplanted kidney is placed into your abdomen.
With a functioning kidney transplant, you will feel better and have more energy. However, it is not a cure, and you will require life-long medication and follow-up care with the outpatient team. It is important that our kidney transplant team assess your suitability to have a transplant.
When can I have a transplant?
Ideally, we would aim for you to have a transplant before you need dialysis. This is known as pre-emptive transplantation. Your kidney team will discuss this with you during your kidney clinic appointment. However, this does not mean that you cannot have a transplant after having started dialysis.
Pre-emptive transplantation is more likely to occur if you have a living donor. Please see more information on the living donor page.
If you do not have a living donor, once assessed as suitable you will be registered for the national deceased kidney donor waiting list. Statistically there is an average waiting time of two–five years depending on many factors.
What to expect post-transplant
This section contains information on:
Please visit the Kidney Care UK charity website for advice, support and financial assistance:
Kidney Care UK has a range of leaflets on transplantation – please click and look on the right-hand side to see:
- Transplantation factsheet
- Donating a kidney leaflet
- Frequently asked questions about Kidney Transplantation