Friday, January 11, 2008

Pancreas Transplants

They're getting close. However, I've been hearing that they've been getting close to a cure since I was diagnosed in 1988. Last night I researched the Mayo Clinic website. They have a branch in Jacksonville called St. Lukes that has performed pancreas transplants. I am not very knowledgeable on this procedure but from what I read, it seems some people have walked away from Type 1 diabetes completely after having this surgery. There are a lot of risks with having extreme hypoglycemia's (low blood sugars) afterwards. If you're interested you can read a summary about the procedures HERE.

I wouldn't qualify for this procedure because I have no long term complications... yet.

In general, candidates for pancreas transplantation include:

Pancreas transplant alone
Diabetics who have early or no kidney disease but need a pancreas transplant to improve blood sugar control and/or prevent the onset of diabetic complications (including progression of kidney disease).

Pancreas-after-kidney transplant
People with diabetes who have received a kidney transplant in the past and now need a pancreas transplant to improve blood sugar control and prevent other diabetic complications.

Combined kidney-pancreas transplant
Diabetics with kidney failure in need of a kidney transplant. These patients have the option of also receiving a pancreas transplant.

I have only bits and pieces of information right now, but honestly, I did not know this was even being done in the United States yet.

1 comment:

Donna said...

I've never really considered a pancreas transplant myself. I think it's because I've done so well with my pump. But it doesn't hurt to keep up to date on all of our options. Thanks for sharing this.