is 99 per cent. Recipients can live full lives after their transplant.
Dr Kulkarni is an advocate for kidney transplants or home dialysis if a transplant can’t be done, but said a healthy lifestyle could prevent chronic kidney disease altogether.
“Kidneys work 24 hours a day, seven days a week to take by-products out of the blood, but many people are unaware about the major role these organs play in maintaining general health and well being.
“Kidney problems are increasing substantially due to the aging popu- lation and increased incidence of diabetes and high blood pressure.
“If a person suffers from kidney problems it often leads to other chronic diseases, including heart disease and its complications.
“Seventy per cent of kidney patients with deteriorating kidney function die before they end up on dialysis, because of heart and cardiovascular problems – it’s all linked, it’s all problems with the blood vessels. Once kidney disease is advanced it’s hard to stop so it’s important to prevent it from the start.” There were 1140 patients on dialysis and 946 renal transplant patients in WA at the end of 2013 and about 60 patients are on the kidney transplant waiting list. Patients are assessed before they go on the list to ensure they are fit enough to undergo the transplant surgery. They then wait for a compatible kidney to become available on the state waiting list,
www.communitypix.com.au d443743 unless they have a family member or friend who is able to donate. The amount of time a patient has spent on dialysis is taken into account, but the average waiting time is about 1-4 years, depending on the person's blood type and compatibility. There are significant shortage of kidneys available for transplant.
Kidney specialist Hemant Kulkarni flanked by patients John Bloor and Joanne Whinwray.