Sometimes a patient waiting to have a transplant has antibodies in their blood that would react against the kidney and damage it. These antibodies may be due to a previous transplant, pregnancy or blood transfusion and the patient is said to be 'sensitized'. Transplantation in these circumstances would result in severe rejection and potential loss of the kidney. However, it is possible to remove or suppress these antibodies in a process known as 'desensitization', which can allow the transplant to take place.
A small number of centres in the UK are attempting to use 'desensitization'. We have transplanted 30 previously 'sensitized' patients in the last few years, and have a 1 year graft survival of 75%, which compares well with international centres.
Our experience and success attracts referrals from all over the UK.
What we do
We have developed a particular interest in transplanting these immunologically complex patients. The process of 'desensitization' can involve a number of different techniques, including:
using drugs to inhibit antibody production
using additional drugs which suppress the immune system
removing antibodies (plasmapheresis and immunoabsorption) from the circulation.
For further information about our programmes or to refer a patient, please contact Mr Nizam Mamode, lead clinician in antibody incompatible transplantation. Email firstname.lastname@example.org