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Kidney Transplant Specialist

Victor Carabello, MD -  - Nephrologist

Carabello Kidney

Victor Carabello, MD

Nephrologist & Internal Medicine located in East Los Angeles, CA

When both of your kidneys fail, you need a treatment that can resume the vital task of filtering and cleaning your blood. In the immediate term, this task is typically accomplished through dialysis; over the long term, a kidney transplant can offer more freedom and a better quality of life. At Carabello Kidney in East Los Angeles, California, dual board-certified nephrologist and internist Victor Carabello, MD, offers comprehensive care for kidney transplant patients. Call the office or book your appointment online today.

Kidney Transplant Q&A

What is a kidney transplant?

A kidney transplant involves placing a healthy donor kidney inside your body to resume the work that your two failed kidneys can no longer handle, usually because of end-stage kidney disease (ESKD).   

When you undergo transplant surgery, the surgical team doesn’t remove your own kidneys. Instead, they simply place the donor kidney near your bladder and connect it to an artery and a vein in your groin. They also transplant the ureter from the donor and connect it to your bladder.

Unfiltered blood flows through the artery into the transplanted kidney, and the vein sends the filtered blood back out into your body. As the transplanted kidney produces urine with the captured waste and excess fluid, it flows through the donor ureter and into your bladder. 

What are the benefits of a kidney transplant?

Only about 30% of people with kidney failure receive a kidney transplant, while about 70% have ongoing dialysis treatments. This is partly because many people must wait for a suitable donor organ, and partly because some people aren’t good candidates for transplant surgery.     

Whenever it’s an option, there are many advantages to choosing a kidney transplant over dialysis, including: 

  • Having a healthy, fully functional kidney
  • Increased freedom; no need for dialysis 
  • Feeling well; having a better quality of life
  • Improved health and increased longevity

If your kidney is coming from a living donor, you may also have more leeway in choosing when your transplant surgery occurs.  

Are there any downsides to consider?

Even though most kidney transplants are successful and last a lifetime, making the decision to undergo transplant surgery isn’t something you should take lightly. Apart from the risks associated with surgery, there’s a chance that your body could reject the transplanted organ. 

For this reason, you must take anti-rejection medications for as long as your new kidney is working. These medicines can have side effects and increase your risk of infection as well as certain types of cancer.

As a nephrologist who provides comprehensive aftercare for kidney transplant patients, Dr. Carabello monitors and adjusts anti-rejection medications as needed, monitors for infections and malignancies, and checks for signs of rejection every three months.  

If your body does reject a transplanted kidney — something that can occur years after surgery — you will require dialysis or another kidney transplant. 

Am I a candidate for a kidney transplant?

People of all ages, from young children to older adults, have had kidney transplants. To qualify for the procedure, you must be free of cancer and infection, and healthy enough to undergo surgery.  A thorough evaluation can help determine if getting a transplant is a good treatment choice for you.

To learn more about kidney transplants, call Carabello Kidney or book an appointment online today.