Des Moines, IA- Iowa Methodist Medical Center's Transplant Center performed 33 kidney transplants in 2011. It was a new record number for the center, where a total of 442 kidney transplants have been performed since it opened in November of 1987. Almost one-fourth of the 2011 transplants involved living donors or persons who donated a kidney to a family member, friend or to someone they did not know.
According to the Iowa Donor Network (iowadonornetwork.org), over 640 Iowans are waiting today for a kidney transplant. The average wait time to receive a kidney is approximately two years. This wait time can be reduced when a living donor and match is found. This makes expansion of living donor programs through education and community understanding important to kidney transplant programs nationwide.
Qasim Chaudhry, MD, Medical Director for the Iowa Methodist Transplant Center, said "The center has grown tremendously as a result of its dedicated and committed physicians and our clinic, hospital and surgery team members. We deeply appreciate the opportunity to serve the needs of central region Iowans who have End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD)."
The Transplant Center at Iowa Methodist Medical Center provides the full range of general and vascular surgery services needed for a patient to stay on dialysis and remain eligible for a kidney transplant. For 25 years, Iowa Methodist's Transplant Center has performed adult and pediatric kidney transplants with a team of surgeons, nephrologists and support staff. The Iowa Methodist Transplant Center was the first in Iowa to perform a laparoscopic nephrectomy (the minimally-invasive removal of an entire kidney) for a kidney donation from a living donor, and was also the first hospital in Iowa to do a paired kidney exchange (the coordinated exchange of two live kidney donations at the same time to two recipients, providing a suitable match for each patient). The Transplant Center's services include community education and a variety of technical and informational support services for patients and families.
If you are interested in becoming a kidney transplant donor, please contact the Iowa Methodist program at (515) 241-4044 or use the online form at www.iowahealth.org/livingdonor.