A kidney transplant operation is done under general anaesthetic and usually takes between two and three hours.

We tend to think of a transplant as involving the removal of the old organ for replacement with the new, but in a kidney transplant your kidneys are left in place. The new kidney is placed lower down.

The new kidney's blood vessels are joined to the blood vessels that supply your leg, and its ureter is attached to your bladder. (A small plastic tube is often inserted into the ureter to prevent it from getting blocked).

When you come back from the operation you will have a catheter in the bladder and a drain near the operation wound as well as an intravenous line for fluids. If all is well, you will be able to eat and drink the following day.

Click here to see how a kidney is transplanted see animation

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