Offering children a healthy future.
Kidney transplantation places a healthy kidney from a donor (either from a living person or someone who recently died) in your child’s body. Our skilled transplant surgeons are part of an expert team that provides complete care — from guiding you through the process and evaluating potential kidney donors to ongoing care and support.
Expert care and support every step of the way.
For kids with advanced kidney disease, transplantation can improve their quality of life. But before we can recommend a transplant, we have to make sure it is right for each child.
We work with children in all stages of kidney disease — those whose kidneys are still functioning and kids with kidney failure. Your child will have a comprehensive evaluation (reviewing health history and doing a physical exam with imaging and lab tests). We also do a social and psychological assessment of both your child and your family.
For children who cannot have a transplant, dialysis offers long-term treatment. Dialysis is also used temporarily for kids who need therapy while they wait for a kidney. Some children can get a transplant before they need dialysis.
Kidney Transplant Process
Kidney transplantation has many steps. We will guide you through the process and make sure you understand the details — from coordinating doctor’s appointments to helping you plan for your child’s hospital stay, recovery at home, and ongoing care.
We have advanced experience supporting children and families through the transplant process. We help with:
- Education and planning. We make sure you are well-prepared — from knowing what to expect before and after surgery to managing financial and insurance matters.
- Finding a kidney. We work with the United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS) to find a kidney match for your child. We will explain all your options and keep you updated during the search.
- Preparing your child for surgery. We make sure your child knows what to expect. We use a kid-friendly approach to help you understand what will happen and put your child at ease.
- Life after surgery. Your child will need to take medicine, called immunosuppressants, for the rest of their life to prevent their body from rejecting the new kidney. We make sure you and your child know how to take the medicines and manage their possible side effects.
Transplantation can be a long process, but it is lifechanging. Most kidney transplants are successful and allow kids to lead healthy lives. You can count on us by your side to ensure your child’s ongoing health.
Why Choose Us for Your Child’s Kidney Transplant
We provide personal attention and advanced kidney transplant expertise. Families appreciate our:
- Transplant experience. Since 1972, when physicians at St. Christopher’s performed the first pediatric kidney transplant, our highly skilled team brings new hope and better health to children with advanced kidney disease.
- Leading-edge care. As a pediatric academic medical center, we offer the most advanced approaches in kidney transplantation. We use the safest, least-invasive surgical techniques to help kids recover as quickly as possible.
- Team approach. Your child’s team includes kidney doctors, transplant surgeons, nurses, pharmacists, dietitians, social workers, child life specialists and others. Together, we offer complete care and long-term support as your child grows and develops.
- Care coordination. We make a multistep process easier — we worry about the details so that you can focus on your child. We set up appointments and help you manage the medical, financial, and practical details.