General (Featured)

Kidney Transplant

Monday, March 6, 2023

Kidney transplant is another modality for patients with end-stage renal disease. To assist patients with guidance for a kidney transplant, the Fort Smith Regional Dialysis Center is in collaboration with multiple transplant facilities. Some of the transplant facilities include: UAMS Medical Center in Little Rock, AR, St. John’s Medical center in Tulsa, OK, Oklahoma Health Transplant Institute at Oklahoma University in Oklahoma City, OK and Mayo Clinic.

According to the National Kidney Foundation, the average life expectancy on dialysis is 5-10 years; however, many patients have lived on dialysis for 20 or even 30 years. Patients who receive a kidney transplant typically live longer than those who stay on dialysis. Patients who get a kidney transplant before dialysis live an average of 10 to 15 years longer than if they started on dialysis first.  Statistically, younger adults benefit the most from a kidney transplant. However, adults as old as 75 can gain, on average, four more years of life expectancy after a transplant versus staying on dialysis therapy without a transplant.   

Here are some Arkansas Statics that might interest you:

Arkansas Kidney Transplants by Recipient Age for 2020, 2021 and thru October 31, 2022:

Arkansas Kidney Transplants by Donor Type for 2020, 2021 and thru October 31, 2022:

Arkansas Kidney Transplants by Gender for 2020, 2021 and thru October 31, 2022:

What’s involved in a kidney transplant?  A surgery is done to replace a diseased kidney with a healthy kidney from a donor.  The kidney may come from a deceased organ donor or from a living donor. Friends, family members, or others can be evaluated to see if they are a good match to donate a kidney.  This type of transplant is called a living donor transplant.

Many patients may want to know how successful a kidney transplant is.  Kidney transplants are the most successful organ transplant around the world. According to the national Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network, the success rate after a kidney transplant with a living-donor kidney was reported as 97% at 1 year and 86% at 5 years. The success rate after transplant with a deceased-donor kidney was 96% at 1 year and 79% at 5 years.

For most patients who need a transplant, the first step is to get listed on the national kidney transplant waiting list. Most transplant candidates usually wait for some length of time as there are not enough organs for all who need them. To get on the national kidney transplant waitlist, follow these steps:

  1. Find a transplant center. Learn as much as possible about the 200+ transplant centers in the United States and choose one based on your needs, including insurance accepted, location, financial options and support group availability.
  2. Receive a referral from your physician to the transplant center of your choice.
  3. Schedule an appointment for evaluation at the transplant center of your choice to determine if you are a good candidate for transplant.
  4. During the evaluation, ask questions to learn as much as possible about that hospital and its transplant team.


The hospital’s transplant team will decide whether you are a good candidate for transplant. Each hospital has their own criteria for accepting candidates for transplant. After completing the required steps, the hospital’s transplant team will determine if you are a good candidate for transplant. Once you have been determined to be a good candidate you will be added to the national waiting list.


FSRDC is here to walk with you through every step of the transplant process.  If you have questions or want further information regarding a Kidney Transplant, reach out to our Clinical Director, Barbie Thompson, BSN.



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