Living Kidney Donors Network is a non-profit organization offering help to those in need of a kidney transplant in their pursuit of living donation. LKDN also helps those who are interested in being a living kidney donor.

April 2018
Living Kidney Donors Network

Do You Know Why Deceased Donor Kidney Transplants Have Been Increasing?

In each of the past 5 years we've set a new record for the number of deceased donor kidney transplants. This increase is mostly from overdose deaths. In 2000 deaths from overdoses accounted for 1.1% of kidney transplants. In 2017 that number was 13.4%. For some transplant centers 25% of the deceased donors have died from an overdose. And remember, to be a deceased organ donor you need to die in a hospital, organs deteriorate quickly without a blood supply.

In most cases these are good kidneys, they are from young and otherwise healthy individuals. Kidneys used from overdose deaths have similar 5 years success rates to standard kidneys. Patients are always informed if a kidney that comes from such a person or from someone with another medical condition. 

Recipients have the final say on whether they feel comfortable accepting an organ from what is considers an increased risk donor. These organs could be a good option for those over 50 years old. Rules for deceased donation were changed in 2014 resulting in this age group waiting longer for a deceased donor kidney. Many will have to wait longer than their life expectancy on dialysis. One study showed that people waiting for kidney transplants who declined an increased risk organ were far more likely to die than those who accepted an organ with an increased risk. Bottom line is that organs from overdoses might be a good option for all candidates and especially those 50+ years old. Your transplant doctors should review this information during your medical evaluation.

Upcoming LKDN Workshop
For those in the St. Petersburg, FL area there will be a LKDN workshop on June 7th 1 - 3:30 at the The Vinoy Renaissance 501 5th Ave. NE St. Petersburg. To read more about the workshop click here.

This is the 3rd year in a row that the AAKP (American Association of Kidney Patients) has invited me to facilitate the LKDN workshop at their National Patient Meeting.

To make a reservation for the workshop click here or send an email to: Space is limited at the LKDN workshops. You are encouraged to invite a family member of friend, an advocate that could learn how they could help you spread the word about your situation.

Ideas for Getting the Word Out

Here's a video that I'm sure you'll enjoy watching. It's a guide dog telling his owners story. Brilliant, click here to watch it.

Click here to see a postcard you could use to write a message about your need. It's another idea on how to get the word out. If you are interested getting this postcard contact Glenna Frey at:

If you've developed a unique way to get the word out and would like to share it email it to me:

Recent Articles of Interest

A Guinness World Record was set on April 21st for the largest gathering of living organ donors in one location. (Guinness needs to certify the record.) Laurie Lee organized an event that had living donors attend from 37 states and 3 countries. The event was supported by the Transplant Village whose goal is to support Northwestern Medicine’s Comprehensive Transplant Center. Click here to read the story.

Yes, someone you went to school with 50 years ago might be willing to be your kidney donor...only if they know that you need one. Share your story with EVERYONE. Click here to read about it.

This is an update on a technique being developed to use pig organs for transplants. A sad reality is that it's likely technology will solve the organ transplant shortage before altruism. Would you accept a pigs kidney? Click here to read the story. 

Article states that risk of death falls as much for obese patients as for thinner people after the first year of a transplant. Past research has found that obese people with kidney failure did better on dialysis than thinner people. Click here to read the article.

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Harvey Mysel

I’m a two time kidney transplant recipient and founder of the non-profit organization Living Kidney Donors Network. I started LKDN after my first kidney transplant in 2007; my wife Amy was my donor. I’d known about my kidney ailment, PKD a genetic condition, for 20 years. One and a half years after my transplant, I contracted a virus that attacks the kidney. I  was told in January 2012  I needed another transplant. I was very fortunate to receive a kidney from Stephen Liegghio in August 2012. To learn more about Harvey Mysel: Click Here
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