For kidney transplant patients:
Transplant patients have an increased risk of contracting COVID-19 due to the immunosuppressive medication required to keep your body from rejecting the transplanted kidney. This medication is critical for the success of your transplant, so do NOT stop taking it. Instead, take steps to limit any potential exposure to the virus. As Ohio begins to reopen, it is critical to continue staying home as much as possible. Take advantage of grocery delivery and pick-up options, or have a friend or relative shop for you and leave the bags at your door. If you are not able to work remotely, your doctor may be able to write a letter to your employer for a leave of absence.
For those living with a kidney transplant patient:
Any individual living with a transplant patient should exercise extra caution to avoid bringing coronavirus home. Though you may be healthy and low-risk, it’s important to follow the same stringent safety measures as the high-risk individual you live with. That means avoiding unnecessary trips and contact with others, frequently washing your hands and sanitizing surfaces, and wearing a mask any time you leave the house. Working remotely is strongly encouraged for all members of a household with a transplant patient. If this is not possible, work with your employer to identify an isolated space where you can limit contact with others.
For those awaiting kidney transplant:
Though the CDC recommended delaying many procedures, kidney transplants are being evaluated on a case-by-case basis. Transplant centers must take into account the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in their area, access to supplies, and hospital occupancy. Patients most in need of a kidney transplant will be prioritized. In the meantime, continue dialysis treatment and follow the safety recommendations for high-risk individuals.
Contact your Nephrology Associates of Greater Cincinnati care team with questions about kidney transplant and COVID-19.