It is generally accepted that transplantation from a living donor offers the best treatment option for patients with renal (kidney) failure.

This gives patients a chance to avoid long periods on the transplant waiting list and enables pre-emptive transplantation, when the transplant occurs before the start of dialysis.

Living kidney donor transplants on average are more successful than deceased donor kidney transplants.

Kidneys from living kidney donors almost invariably start to work immediately after the operation and tend to last longer than those from deceased donors. The survival rate after five years is approximately 98% and up to 88% of patients remain off dialysis for ten years or more following transplant.

There have been significant contributions in recent years to increasing transplant numbers.

Development of the National Living Donor Kidney Sharing Schemes 

This is when a living kidney donor and recipient are incompatible with each other it may be possible for them to be matched with another donor and recipient pair in the same situation and for the donor kidneys to be 'exchanged' or 'swapped'. The benefit of this type of donation is that each recipient receives a kidney transplant from a living donor that they would not have otherwise had.

Transplants are performed on a range of donor/recipient 'pairs' including friends, relatives, couples (husband, wife, and partner) and acquaintances.

A living donor transplant is only carried out after the transplant team is satisfied that the donor and recipient are fully informed about the risks and benefits of the procedure.

More information

Living kidney donors can self-refer by calling directly to the Living Donor Coordinator Team.