Washington University physicians deliver national leading transplant care at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and St. Louis Children's Hospital. Our kidney transplant team provides exceptional care throughout the entire transplant process. We use our experience and innovation in kidney transplantation to help you live a full, healthy life.
- An experienced team: Our multidisciplinary team of 30 specialists provides you with the highest level of care. We meet weekly to discuss your treatment plan, providing a seamless experience from initial testing and evaluation to long-term care following surgery.
- High volumes, excellent outcomes: Our team performs more than 250 kidney transplants a year — the highest volume in Missouri and one of the highest in the nation. Our organ rejection rates are consistently below the national average. These numbers prove that our specialists are highly skilled in caring for patients with complex kidney conditions.
- Research and innovation: Our partnership with Washington University School of Medicine supports improvements of the kidney transplant process. We remain on the leading edge of innovative immunosuppression to minimize drug side effects and reduce the risk of organ rejection.
- Shorter transplant wait times: We pursue multiple avenues to find a living kidney donor for our patients. As a result, you may experience shorter wait times for a kidney compared to other transplant centers.
- More transplant opportunities: We offer you several different kidney transplant options. We are actively involved in multiple paired-kidney exchange programs that use algorithms to help you find a living donor. This includes our internal exchange program, allowing local donors and recipients to benefit from the gift of organ donation.
- Multi-organ transplantation: Our transplant team has extensive experience treating patients with complex health needs. We regularly complete multi-organ transplants such as kidney-liver, kidney-heart, and kidney-pancreas.
- Patient and family support: You and your loved ones can access education, support groups, one-on-one psychological counseling and our Transplant Mentor Program. In this program, someone who has already had a transplant provides you with information, guidance and emotional support.
Beth was diagnosed with Goodpasture syndrome. She needed a new kidney quickly. Beth received the gift of life thanks to a kidney donor and our transplant team.
If you or someone you love needs a kidney, you may have questions about your kidney transplant options.
At the Transplant Center, we explore every opportunity and resource to match transplant recipients with a suitable kidney. Our innovation leads to more transplant options — and more successful kidney transplants — than any other center in the St. Louis region.
We offer multiple avenues to find a suitable kidney, including:
During this procedure, you are given a healthy kidney from someone who has just passed away. This is the most common type of kidney transplant.
During this surgery, you receive a kidney from a live person — a living kidney donor. This donor could be a friend, a loved one or even a stranger.
If you have a willing kidney donor, but they are not a match for you, kidneys are exchanged between several people, so each person receives a compatible kidney.
Our skilled specialists can often perform a kidney transplant even when the donor is not an ideal match.
We are experienced in multi-organ transplantation. If you have type 1 diabetes and kidney failure, you can receive a new kidney and a new pancreas.
We have over 50 years of experience performing pediatric kidney transplants, helping hundreds of children overcome end-stage kidney disease.
Most people stay in the hospital for about four days after kidney transplant surgery. Before you head home, our specialists help you prepare for life after the procedure.
We go over what medications you must take (and why) and how to watch for signs of infection and organ rejection. Early signs include:
Pain or tenderness over your kidney transplant
Fatigue or weakness
Less urine output than usual
Swelling of hands or feet
Sudden weight gain
Elevated blood pressure
Call your transplant nurse coordinator immediately if you experience any signs of rejection. We treat rejection quickly to avoid complications.
Signs of rejection don’t necessarily mean you will lose your new kidney. Often, we can give you medication to treat rejection successfully.