The following information provides an overview of the processes that
preceed the transplant. Please refer to this information in the days
leading up to the process.
You may not eat or drink anything after midnight the night before your
surgery. You will be admitted to the hospital about two hours before the
Before your surgery, your transplant team will need to do a final check
of your physical health, and your body’s ability to accept the
transplant. So, a number of tests and procedures will be performed. You
will also meet with members of your transplant team so that you will
feel comfortable with the upcoming surgical procedures, and be familiar
with therapies that will be necessary during your recovery.
Before surgery, you will need to have a complete physical, as well as a
chest X-ray, EKG and other blood and urine tests. If you recently had
these studies done in the transplant department, they may not need to be
Tests and Procedures
Blood may also need to be drawn for final crossmatch testing in the
tissue typing lab. In the event that this final crossmatch indicates
that you may react with the donor and cause immediate rejection of the
kidney, the surgery would be canceled.
If you have not had dialysis treatment recently, a treatment may be
arranged before surgery
A respiratory therapist will give you an Incentive Spirometer to be used
after surgery. This device encourages you to take deep breaths and the
therapist will instruct you on its use. It is important to use this
device after surgery as it will help speed your progress and decrease
your chances of developing a respiratory infection after surgery.
You will also meet with an anesthesiologist. An anesthesiologist is a
physician who delivers anesthesia during the surgery. The
anesthesiologist will give you information and answer any questions that
you may have.
An intravenous line (IV) will be placed in your arm or in a vein near
your collar bone. This will enable your team to give you fluids and
medications before, during and after surgery.
Removing Your Malfunctioning Kidneys
In most cases, your own kidneys will not be removed from your body
during your transplant surgery. However, if you have had repeated
infections or have extremely large kidneys from polycystic kidney
disease, you may be advised to have them removed prior to the transplant
Your transplant surgery will take approximately three-to-five hours.
Once you get to the operating room, the anesthesiologist will give you
anesthesia so you will sleep during the surgery. Your new kidney will be
placed in your pelvis. The blood vessels from your new kidney will be
connected to your blood vessels. The ureter, (the tube that carries
urine from the kidney to the bladder) will be connected to your bladder.
A tube (Foley catheter) will be placed in your bladder. This will
provide drainage of urine from your bladder during recovery.
Lankenau Medical Center
Schedule an appointment with a Lankenau specialist:
For more information, call 1.866.CALL.MLH.