Heroic as we consider living kidney donors to be, new research published Thursday in the Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology suggests that we aren’t doing the best we can to safeguard their health down the road.
Researchers analyzed data taken from the Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network, a national database of donors and recipients, to determine the quality of care that living kidney donors received in the event they themselves needed a kidney transplant in the future. From January 1, 2010 to July 31, 2015, there were 210 such donors added onto the waiting list, and the researchers found that while 169 had received transplants by September 2015, 60 percent were initially considered inactive, a status that delayed them from obtaining priority access to the donor waiting list as they were guaranteed. There were similar delays for some even once they had made it onto the list.
We found that most prior living kidney donors on the kidney waiting list are transplanted quickly, but some spend periods of time waiting in inactive status. Others wait weeks or months on the waiting list without priority access, which must be requested by their transplant hospital," said lead author Dr. Jennifer Wainright of the United Network for Organ Sharing, the private non-profit, organization that manages our country’s transplant system, in a statement. Continue reading
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