Treatment Options for End-Stage Renal Failure or Disease
Patients with end-stage renal disease have options for treatment and do not have to suffer from the symptoms of uremia or the accumulation of other toxic waste products normally filtered by the kidneys. Patients can be treated by hemodialysis or peritoneal dialysis or may receive a kidney transplant.
Kidney transplantation has been a successful procedure used to treat renal disease for more than 50 years. The most common disease processes resulting in end-stage renal disease for which renal transplantation is a treatment option are hypertension, diabetes, glomerulonephritis, and nephrosclerosis.
The renal transplantation program at Sentara Norfolk General Hospital was established in 1972. It was the first of the transplantation programs at Sentara. In 1997, the program celebrated the 25th anniversary of providing transplantation services to patients with renal disease in the region.
Since the program's inception, more than 1,900 kidney transplants have been performed. Referrals are received from 40 dialysis units throughout Virginia and North Carolina. The program performs an average of 60 to 80 renal transplants annually.
Patients may have the option of a deceased donor, living related or living unrelated (such as spouse to spouse or friend to friend) transplantation depending on their circumstances. Those who receive a living donor transplant usually have improved kidney function and graft survival.
Patients who receive a kidney transplant can expect to remain in the hospital five to eight days. Living donors generally are hospitalized for two to four days.
A Team Approach
Our transplant team, comprised of many dedicated specialists, includes transplant nephrologists, transplant and urologic surgeons, a dedicated infectious disease specialist and immunologist, certified transplant coordinators, pharmacists, social workers, and other professionals and support personnel dedicated to the care of kidney transplant patients.
Patients, their families, and their referring physicians and dialysis unit staff members are important members of the team as well. We make every effort to include them in decision making throughout the transplant process.