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HMC performs rare incompatible blood type kidney transplantation

A team of kidney transplant surgeons at Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC) has successfully performed a rare kidney transplant for a patient whose blood type is incompatible with that of the donor. A blood type match between the donor and recipient of an organ like a whole liver or kidney is a must.

With this unprecedented surgery in Qatar, HMC has become one of the very few organ transplant centers in the world that perform transplant surgery for a donor and recipient whose blood type does not match. These centers represent only 5 per cent of the total organ transplant centers worldwide.

In a statement to QNA, Medical Director of HMC's Hamad General Hospital and Head of Qatar Organ Transplant Center Dr. Yousuf Al Maslamani stated:" Thanks to the great advancement of the healthcare sector in Qatar, this great leap has been achieved. The healthcare sector's advancement coupled with the highly trained clinical teams and state of the art medical technology placed Qatar's healthcare system among the best healthcare systems in the world.

A great deal of preoperative preparation work, specialized technology, and certain surgical expertise are needed for this rare type of surgery, that is the reason why very few organ transplant centers take up this laborious task, said Dr. Al Maslamani.

Preparation work for this type of surgery starts at the laboratory then work moves to the hospital where the antibodies are removed from the recipient's blood through a repeated filtration process.

Following the transplant, the recipient will have to undergo routine tests as well as daily tests to check levels of antibodies in the blood to ensure that they are within normal range. In the event the antibodies rate was found to be higher than normal the filtration process would be repeated as a precautionary measure.

The success of the transplant between a donor and a recipient whose blood-type do not match opens the door for more transplants from living donors. With this in mind, we anticipate a 20% rise in the number of kidney transplants in Qatar. About 20 organ transplant surgeries, involving living and brain-dead donors, have been performed at HMC last year, Dr. Al Maslamani added.

 

"HMC has all human and technical capabilities and is ready to launch a pancreatic transplantation program, but we haven't had yet a case that meets the medical requirements for pancreas transplantation from a deceased donor," Dr. Al Maslamani added.

In Qatar, kidney transplantation from living donors is only performed among related family members, and the available state-of-the-art technologies have made it possible to extract kidneys from living donors through simple laparoscopic procedures.

The first kidney transplant surgery in Qatar was performed in 1986, but the Doha Organ Donation Accord became the cornerstone for the development of organ transplantation services in Qatar. On 4 September 2010, the national organ donation campaign was launched under the theme "Together We Plant Hope" to officially kick off the development journey of HMC's organ transplantation program and turn HMC into a national center for multi-organ transplant in Qatar.

Only ten days following the official opening of the Qatar Center for Organ Transplantation in late 2011, the first liver transplant surgery was successfully performed in Qatar.

"In Qatar, we have kidney, liver, and cornea transplantation programs, and transplant surgeries are performed by a team of highly skilled professionals. We have state-of-the-art facilities and provide safe and compassionate care," Dr. Al Maslamani concluded.

An organ transplant can be a life-saving procedure and can significantly improve the quality of life for someone with chronic organ failure. These life-saving organs come from deceased donors who have pledged during their lifetime to give their organs to someone in need. A deceased organ donor can save up to eight lives.

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