Chennai, 16 November 2022: Fortis Malar, a leading hospital with a 30-year legacy in organ transplant, successfully performed a living donor kidney “SWAP transplant” – a procedure where a living kidney donor, if incompatible with a recipient in his/her own family, exchanges kidneys with another donor-recipient pair. These live donor transplants occur simultaneously, as it is essentially an exchange of organs between two families, who cannot donate to their own family member because of blood group mismatch.
This case is about two courageous women. First, a 56-year-old mother, who wanted to donate a kidney to her 30-year-old son, who had suffered kidney failure and was on dialysis. Second about a 58-year-old wife, who wanted to give a kidney to her 65-year-old husband as one of his kidneys had failed. However, there was a mismatch with their respective recipient family members, due to blood group incompatibility.
The Fortis Malar team assessed the case and found that the organs could be swapped between the two families as the blood groups matched that way. Hence, the “swap transplant procedure” was recommended and both the families agreed and gave their consent. The team from Fortis Malar was led by Dr. Prabhu Kanchi, Lead Transplant Nephrologist, Dr. Kapali Neelamegam, Head of GI and organ transplant, Dr. Rajkumar, Urologist, Dr. Vidhya, Anaesthetist and Vaseekaran, Surgery Associate – who successfully performed the swap transplant. Following the procedure, the condition of both patients is stable.
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Commenting on the success of the swap transplant, Dr. Prabhu Kanchi, Lead Nephrologist, Fortis Malar, Chennai, said, “The benefits of live donor swap transplant is that both the recipients are able to lead normal lives instead of living through a long, tedious dialysis procedure, while also waiting for a matched kidney from a deceased donor. Many a time, we are unable to proceed ahead with a transplant, due to a good match not being available. The costs and time involved can be reduced significantly if there is a swap option. To ensure benefit to both the patients, it is mandatory to have age matched donors with similar kidney function and overall health”.
Dr. Kapali Neelamekam, Head of organ transplant and GI surgery added, “Patients wait for 3 to 5 years for a deceased donor organ if there is no compatible donor in the family. Swap transplant is a boon to these patients if the transplant teams help them find a suitable pair. It minimizes the shortfall of kidneys and enables the increase of transplant numbers legally”.
Mr. Chandrasekar, Facility Director, Fortis Malar said “Fortis Healthcare has introduced state-of-the-art infrastructure to facilitate better clinical outcomes for organ transplants. We are trying to facilitate
the process if a donor-recipient does not have a compatible match. Fortis is looking to encourage Swap transplant in these patients – both intrastate and interstate, by maintaining an inhouse registry. This will promote more compatible transplants, improve availability of organs and therefore lead to improved outcomes.”