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Length of time organs last

I know what the statistics say about the length of time donor kidney/pancreas last for, but how long have any of you had yours? I know I read somewhere a woman in England has a kidney lasting 30+ years now. Wow! I am 31 now and had a kidney and pancreas transplant in Jan. this year. I know Ill have to have more transplant(s) being younger. Just wondering how long any of you have had yours.

Thanks !! 

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  • Hi Heather -- I am post my first and only kidney pancreas transplant 23 years now, and going strong. It was cadaver organs. I don't wear masks unless I am going to a Dr.'s office during cold and flu season -- of course we don't go to shopping malls, movie theatres or any place crowded during the cold and flu season, not because I worry about my tx, I just feel miserable when I get a cold.  Haven't had the flu since 1968. 

    Just be smart, take all your meds on time no matter how they make you feel (that is a matter to discuss with your doctor, if you are having Rx side effects). One or two beers or two glasses of wine with dinner has been fine for me -- but this is an individual thing.  Ask your doctor -- mine said no more than one or two glasses of wine or beer.

    Just try to be healthy - exercise, eat good foods, keep your body strong.  Have your labs done on time and get a copy every time from your laboratory -- you see anything out of whack, call your transplant coordinator and ask them about it -- be proactive.

    UC San Francisco and Vanderbilt University are going into the human testing stages with an artificial/implantable kidney -- and from everything I have read it is very promising for the very near future.  Google "Roy Shuvo," "Implantable Artificial Kidney," "The Kidney Project."  This may actually replace transplants and the need for transplant meds.  UCSF is also working on a implantable artificial pancreas that safeguards the contained islet cells from the immune system. 

    The more educated and informed you are on everything transplant, the less anxiety and fear you will have about the future.  And as far as the future goes - jump in with both feet, live life, feel good, you're young - so do what all young people do and have a blast.

  • I wonder the same thing I judt got my new kidney & pancreas back in May 2017. I'll be 38 at the end of the month. Don't know if I could go through all this again in my 60's.
    • Hopefully you won't need to face that decision.  I had a 2nd Tx at age 57 and I recovered faster and felt better than my 1st Tx in 2000.  You never know what you can handle until you have to.

    • Chris - I had my kp tx at 38 - I am 61 now -- keep healthy, exercise, get proper rest and take care of your body.  Whether or not you could go through it again depends on you and your motivation to accept one alternative over the other.

      However new technologies are right around the corner on every level - from gene therapy and stem cell inducement to forego immuno-suppresants - to artificial implantable organs. See my other post in this topic/blog. 

  • I would like to piggy back by asking if anyone knows of an unrelated deceased kidney tx recipient who is no longer on any transplant related meds.

    • After surgery for a peripheral issue, I had to reduce, then stop doses of myfortic to aid in healing.  That was two years ago and there are no plans to restart the medication. There is on-going research designed to eliminate the need for any anti immune drugs but that is years away.  

    • Patsy - I have heard about a few from my transplant doctor at University of Miami/Jackson Hospital -- and a few have been successfully off the meds for a while.  I have thought about it, but have decided not to because my doctor ruled against it -- and I did not have the motivation to do otherwise.  Tx docs talk with each other at conferences held quite often - if your doctor has been around awhile, I bet he/she has a few stories on this topic.

      • Hi Brian:

        From the time Cyclosporine (sp) and other transplant new meds hit the marrket, i asked my nephrologist about taking me off Prednisone and switching to one of the newer drugs. He refused. When he retired I asked the new doc about trying one of the newer meds; he too did n ot want to change.  Upon his retirement, I tried again to get off Pred., the response was the same.

        I take a small dosage daily and I have been tempted on several occasions to wean myself off, but it flashes across my thoughts what my initial nephrologist said to  me, "if it's not broken, why try to fix it - which do you prefer, a pill a day, or a dialysis treatment." I finally gave up asking.

        I do believe that they just don't want to take any chances or want any surprises seeing how far I've come. And, I respect that.

  • Hi Heather. I received my kidney in the fall of  '02 from my cousin and got my panc. in Feb of 2008. Knock on wood, I've still had no episodes of rejection.

    I heard something interesting though at the Friends for Life conference (T1s and families) and apparently after about 15 or 20 years with a pancreas, in about 5 - 6% of recipients, the T1 autoimmunity returns and you get T1 all over again for the same reasons. Hopefully by that time, they will have found out enough about the immune system to manage it. They are working on it.

  • on liver tx.a guy in the uk at the last time i looked was 22yrs.at that time a couple of yrs bk was worlds longest surviving liver tx         BILL

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