Is there any preparation for the transplant surgery that is required as a living donor?
After you have passed the preliminary assessment and investigations there is no specific preparation for the transplant operation other than staying fit and active and trying to lose any excessive weight prior to the surgery.
What is the difference between an open operation and laparoscopic (keyhole) surgery?
There are two different techniques for removing a kidney for live donor transplantation an open operation and laparoscopic (keyhole) kidney removal.
With the evolution of laparoscopy surgery, conventional open operations are becoming less common these days for kidney removal.
Laparoscopic surgery for kidney removal involves inserting into your abdomen a slender, light-containing, fibre-optic ‘telescope’ attached to a camera which provides the surgeon with a view of the operative site.
This procedure permits smaller incisions than those used in conventional open surgery.
This can minimise post-operative pain, resulting in a faster recovery and a shorter time in hospital. This type of procedure also improves the cosmetic results of such surgery.
How long will I need to stay in hospital following surgery?
If your operation has been laparoscopic you may be at home in two to four days. If your operation has been open, you can expect to remain in hospital for up to a week.
Regular blood tests, checks and observations will be carried out while you are in hospital. Testing may be undertaken after you have gone home, to monitor your progress.
How long do I have to have off work to recover?
In most cases, normal activity can be resumed 4 weeks after surgery. Some people have even returned to work by this time, depending on the type of work they do.
If you are in a position to do so, it is a good idea to take at least 6–8 weeks off work, just to rest fully and recover.