Living Kidney Donation

Having a living donor give a kidney to a child can be a good option for many children. Doctors at Texas Children’s highly recommend living donors as the best option for kidney transplant.

Parents, family members or friends who are interested in donating a kidney can contact Kathy Raford, the Texas Children’s transplant referral specialist. The potential donor will be contacted for an initial screening after being approved by the insurance company. 

Texas Children’s Hospital partners with St. Luke’s Medical Center for the living donation process since all donors must be an adult. St. Luke’s is physically connected to Texas Children’s offering a convenient location for transplantation.

Donor Selection Criteria

To be considered a kidney donor, you must meet the following criteria:

  1. Must be at least 18 years of age.
  2. Must be willing to donate of his or her own free will and without monetary gain or mental coercion. The donor must also have full knowledge of the risks and complications that could occur during surgery
  3. Blood type compatibility and a negative cross match must be verified between the donor and the recipient.
  4. Negative serum pregnancy at test at the time of the evaluation and transplant for women of childbearing age.
  5. Must be in good health free from hypertension, diabetes, cancer, kidney disease, heart disease, active alcohol and or substance abuse issues, or any other medical conditions that are deemed unsuitable.
  6. Must have a BMI less than or equal to 35.

Donation Process

After your child and the living donor have been evaluated and found to be a suitable match, the transplant team will schedule the transplant surgery date and time. The donor and child will be scheduled for a final cross match and obtain additional blood tests at least 7 to 10 days before the transplant surgery date. The donor and child will be admitted to the hospital the day before the scheduled surgery.