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Kidney Transplant Program

At UC Irvine Health, our transplant specialists have been providing kidney transplants to patients with end-stage kidney disease for more than 40 years.

We offer a comprehensive range of transplant services, including living kidney donations. This means that a patient needing a transplant can receive a kidney directly from a relative or friend, rather than wait for an organ to become available.

For more information or to make an appointment, please call us at 714-456-8441. 

Living kidney donation

Donors no longer need to undergo open surgery because kidneys can be harvested through a minimally invasive technique called laparoscopic nephrectomy. This technique, which involves tiny incisions, means fewer days in the hospital and a faster recovery.

Live-donor kidney transplants usually result in better outcomes for recipients because the organs are typically healthier than those from deceased donors. Consequently, recipients usually need fewer immunosuppressive drugs to guard against organ rejection.

Donor candidates undergo numerous tests and an evaluation of their general health and their compatibility with the recipient. As a result, only the healthiest donors are selected.

Who is a kidney transplant candidate?

Candidates for kidney transplantation include:

  • Patients on peritoneal dialysis or hemodialysis
  • Patients with deteriorating kidney function, but not yet on dialysis

Evaluation for kidney transplant

Candidates for a kidney transplant receive an accelerated new-patient evaluation and pre-appointment consultation with a nurse. The assessment includes X-rays, an electrocardiogram, imaging scans and lab tests to evaluate kidney and liver function.

Members of our kidney transplant team members also provide continuous pre-transplant monitoring of each candidate.

Team members conduct evaluations of potential live donors, including parents, adult children, siblings, spouses, close friends or other relatives. Team members review the entire donation process with all donor candidates so they can make an informed decision.

Transplant patients and their families also receive in-depth education on what to expect before, during and after surgery. Patients in the program have round-the-clock access to a clinical transplant coordinator for assistance with any questions or concerns.

Multidisciplinary approach

The kidney transplant team comprises highly experienced surgeons, nephrologists, pathologists, pharmacists, nurses, dietitians and social workers.

Working at the only university medical center in Orange County, our physicians have access to a wide range of subspecialists as needed, as well as ground-breaking research and clinical trials.

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