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Living-Donor Kidney Transplant Process

At UPMC, we carefully evaluate potential living-donors to ensure that they can safely donate their kidney.

We perform comprehensive medical and psychosocial exams to determine risk for surgery and postoperative follow-up needs.

Steps of Living-Kidney Donation

From the perspective of the recipient, the living-donor transplant process is similar to a traditional deceased-donor kidney transplant.

For kidney donors, the process includes the following steps:

  1. A pre-donation evaluation
  2. Surgery to remove the donor kidney
  3. Post-donation follow-up and care

Throughout the living-donation process, donors will interact with a multidisciplinary team of kidney transplant experts, including:

  • Independent living-donor advocates
  • Transplant social workers
  • Dedicated transplant nurse coordinators
  • Nutritionists
  • Transplant nephrologists
  • Transplant surgeons

This team will determine if you are suitable for living-donation.

Partnering Through Organ Donation

If cleared to donate an organ, donor's will be assigned an independent living-donor advocate to act on their behalf.

The living-donor advocate helps to ensure the donor is fully aware of what it means to be a living donor and understand the risks of the transplant surgery.

The living-donor advocate will voice any concerns of the donor to the multidisciplinary transplant team and will determine that the donor’s decision is fully informed.

Become a Kidney Donor

If you'd like more information about becoming a kidney donor, call toll-free 1-877-640-6746 or contact a UPMC living-donor kidney transplant nurse coordinator at:

  • 412-647-5647
  • 412-647-5489
  • 412-647-5512



To schedule an evaluation for living-kidney donation, please complete the above “Can I be a donor?” form and submit to, and a member of the kidney transplant team will reach out to you in the near future.

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