Kidney chains could increase yearly transplants, study says

03/14/2013 | Philly.com (Philadelphia)

If more hospitals performed kidney transplants through paired kidney exchanges, nearly 1,100 more patients in the U.S. could undergo the procedure annually, according to a study published in the American Journal of Transplantation. The exchanges, also known as kidney chains, allow donors incompatible with their loved ones to give a kidney to another person, and in return, the loved one will get a kidney from yet another person. "For the one-third of patients who manage to find a living donor but learn they are the wrong blood type or are otherwise incompatible, kidney exchanges offer a very high rate of successful transplantation. But many transplant centers have not found a way to make this possible for their patients," said study leader Dr. Dorry Segev from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

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