View Full Version : Requirements for a kidney donor

01-08-2010, 12:09 AM
I had a kidney transplant on June 28,2005.I guess I know as much as anyone here ,so I'll tell you what I know.

The person who is going to be a donor must get tested.They simply take a blood sample from your arm .
Then they get to work.
What they are looking for is a perfect match.There is nothing you can do to affect the outcome.you are either a good match or not...But it is a matter of degrees .Some one may be a better match than other .They determine this by assigning value to your blood in 6 different categories.I don't know,nor do you need to know what they call each category.But lets pretend for a moment.Let us say that the six categories are
1 how acidic is your blood
2 what is your normal ratio of white blood cells/red
3 lets say #3 is your bloods ability to do such &such
I don't know what the 6 categories are and i can not copy & paste to this site.my computer wont let me [I know,we should make tyler use my computer!! ]

So,they take the 6 categories and assign a number of 1-100 to each item..you can imagine a chart with six tems going across with 1-100 dropping down below each of the 6 categories. We now know that there are 600 possible ways to match someone.

They tested my blood and found out that I was a ..
23,67,91,14,55,7 then they test the potential donor and assign the appropiate numbers .
I was lucky....My younger brother and I are genetic twins, 7 years apart which means that out of the 600 different possibilities he matched me perfectly...Maine Med in Portland maine had done [i think ] 850 or so organ transplants and I was only the second to match perfectly.
Now if you are thinking of donating a kidney they will need to know how closely you match your recipient.You can still donate to a person if you are not a perfect match.Suppose we use my numbers and you
miss me by a few numbers here and there. That simply means that the recpient will need to take more of an anti rejection regiment of meds...Where my brother was a perfect match,I was sent home 48 hours after the transplant with no anti rejection meds [more on this later]
The only road block we ran in to was that my brother was overweight.My weight is perfect .in fact ,lately I have been having to work to keep my weight up .
So my brother ,at 6' 1" and 285lbs had to go on a diet.They made him lose 45 pounds before they would allow it .didn't want his large body being maintained by one kidney.
Took him about 4 months to lose that weight and then I got the green light ...I eventully had to go on some small dose of anti rejection meds but that is the boring part .
So any one who wants to donate an organ of any kind needs to be
tested acording to the wishes of the recipients doctor.The surgery for the donor is minor [ain't no surgery minor]

the donor will get a 3-4 " incision in his/her lower left abdomen...they go in , tie off your ureter, and stuff the kidney into a baggie,,,then they remove the baggie and put it on ice ..All this time they were prepping my body to accept the new kidney.New kidney's in men go into the right lower abdomen [in the front] Men have lots of spare room that women don't have,what with all their fancy plumbing ,,,you know the plumbing that men know next to nothing about ! I don't know where a women would receive a new kidney: maybe the same place ...

For now ,that is enough to get you started.Oh yeah,,,my brother was told he would be out of work recuperating for about 6 weeks..he went back after 3 weeks ..I took quite a while [months ] to get over the trauma of the transplant.But given that when I was first diagnosed I was told that if I hadn't gone to see the doctor that I had only 10 -12 weeks left to live ,,I think I worked out okay ..some nights I get a little cranky [Ian,rgbarr,blighty ] but all in all I will gladly take this over the alternative !!

Questions ??? fire away

Flying Orca
01-08-2010, 08:28 AM
Thanks Rip. I wonder whether we can all just go see our doctors, get typed, and have the results e-mailed to Chuck's team?

01-08-2010, 09:32 AM
My brother lived in Seattle at the time and i live in New Hampshire..
He had to go to a doctor that was specified by my head surgeon/transplant dr.here in new england ,which leads me to believe that you'd need to see a specialist...health insurance will pay for it .. i think it is something like $160.00

01-08-2010, 10:40 AM
I think perhaps you would have a hard time convincing Chuck to accept it. I know several people that he has pulled out of the fire over the years that would gladly donate an organ. He politely declined. His heart is a problem, he has no left kidney, and the right one is failing. He refuses to place anyone else at risk for something similar to himself. He is on a list for donors, but only those that have been deceased due to an accident. It may be noted that he has outlived most of his contemporaries.

01-08-2010, 01:28 PM
My heart goes out for you. You are a good and caring man Chisler.