Some people with kidney failure may be able to have a kidney transplant. During transplant surgery, a healthy kidney from a donor is placed into your body. The new, donated kidney does the work that your two kidneys used to do.
The donated kidney can come from someone you don't know who has recently died (deceased donor), or from a living person - a relative, spouse, or friend. Due to the shortage of kidneys, patients on the waiting list for a deceased donor kidney may wait many years.
A kidney transplant is a treatment for kidney failure; it's not a cure. You will need to take medicines every day to make sure your immune system doesn't reject the new kidney External link. You will also need to see your health care professional regularly.
A working transplanted kidney does a better job of filtering wastes and keeping you healthy than dialysis. However, a kidney transplant isn't for everyone. Your doctor may tell you that you're not healthy enough for transplant surgery.
Watch a Video About Kidney Transplant
View this video from the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK).
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