Kidney transplant volumes double at Sentara Norfolk
The kidney transplant program at Sentara Norfolk General Hospital is on a roll. Through July, there have been 64 kidney transplants and 6 kidney/pancreas transplants performed, which is more than the entire 2016 calendar year. Even with this increase in volume, there are more than 600 patients still on the waiting list for kidneys through Sentara. The addition of transplant surgeon Duncan Yoder, MD, in partnership with Surgical Director John Colonna, MD, helped increase program volumes, but there are additional factors at work.
Kidney exchanges and pairing programs, in conjunction with the traditional organ distribution model, are creating new opportunities transplantation. Sentara has created a robust Living Donor Program by expanding screening and education options for their donors. Changes in the nationwide organ allocation model have improved access to transplant for patients in Hampton Roads. The revised model is focused on age and survival matching for donor and recipients, difficult-to-match recipients, time on dialysis, and sub-type compatibility, which have been key areas of focus for Sentara.
Drs. Colonna and Yoder, part of Sentara Vascular and Transplant Specialists, implant donated organs. Dr. John Malcolm of Urology of Virginia recovers living donor kidneys for Sentara Norfolk General’s program. Nephrology Associates of Tidewater and Tidewater Kidney Specialist both have transplant nephrologists, led by Medical Directors Drs. Harlan Rust and Thomas McCune, who provide intensive transplant medical care before, during and after each transplant. The Sentara program maintains some of the top outcomes in Virginia in graft and patient survival at the one and three year milestones post-surgery.