Donating a kidney is a major decision that should not be taken lightly. It is important to understand the risks and benefits associated with this procedure before making a decision. The risks of major surgery, such as bleeding and infection, are the same for donating a kidney as for any other major surgery. Other side effects may include nausea, vomiting, constipation, and numbness around the incision.
Most complications are rare and can be treated if they occur. If you are healthy, donating a kidney will not increase your chances of getting sick or having serious health problems.The National Kidney Foundation (NKF) is the largest organization dedicated to the awareness, prevention, and treatment of kidney disease. If you donate to a transplant center associated with the NKF, you will be given priority if you ever need a kidney in the future. In addition, the Living Donor Protection Act protects donors from being denied life, disability, or long-term care insurance after donating.In order to donate a kidney, you must have compatible blood types and tissues with the recipient.
The donor evaluation team will determine if you are healthy enough to donate and if you are a good match for the recipient. Medicare, Medicaid, or kidney beneficiary insurance will cover the medical costs of donating a kidney.It is possible to get pregnant after donation, but it is generally not recommended for at least six months after donation surgery. Living donation does not change life expectancy and does not seem to increase the risk of kidney failure.If you are considering donating a kidney, it is important to discuss these risks with your transplant team and request center-specific statistics. Ultimately, it is up to you to decide if donating a kidney is right for you.