Kidney-Pancreas Transplant Surgery

When you arrive at Emory for your transplant, your coordinator will direct the check-in process. Some final testing will be done to make sure you are healthy enough for surgery. These tests may include chest X-ray, EKG, blood and urine tests, and a health history and physical exam.

Once in the operating room, you will receive general anesthesia and be put to sleep. The surgeon will make an incision in the center of your abdomen from just below your breast bone to your pubic bone. The donated kidney will be placed in the left lower part of your abdomen in a protected area. The blood vessels of the kidney will be connected to your large blood vessels nearby. The ureter (the tube that connects the kidney to the bladder) will be stitched to your bladder so that urine can flow from the kidney to your bladder.

During the same operation, the donor pancreas will be transplanted. The pancreas is also placed in the lower part of your abdomen. Blood vessels are connected to supply blood flow to the pancreas. A section of the donor small intestine, called the duodenum, is removed along with the donor pancreas. This section of donor intestine is sewn onto your small intestine so that the digestive enzymes secreted from the pancreas will empty into your intestine. Once the pancreas is in place, the incision is closed using staples and a sterile dressing is placed over the incision.