Transplant Surgery

Information for Kidney Donors

The three types of transplants are named for the donor of the kidney:

  • Living-related: the donated kidney comes from a close, directly related family member such as a parent, sibling or child who is healthy, willing and able to donate one kidney.
  • Living-unrelated: the kidney is donated by someone who is alive, but not closely related such as a spouse, aunt or uncle, or a friend.
  • Deceased donor: the donated organ comes from someone who has died. Typically the donor suffered a brain injury, and passed away with either neurologic or cardiac death.

Each year, approximately 50 percent of Tufts Medical Center's kidney transplants come from deceased donors, 30 percent from living-related donors and 20 percent from living, unrelated donors. We offer laparoscopic nephrectomy (removal of kidney) as well as the traditional open approach for all live kidney donors.

At Tufts Medical Center, during the evaluation process patients are offered a unique "extended family" meeting with members of Tufts Medical Center's transplantation team including a nephrologist, surgeon, nurse, and a social worker. This group reviews the entire process-from dialysis through long-term transplant follow-up-for all interested family members, partners and close friends. The potential for using a living donor is discussed at a later stage.

If you are interested in becoming a kidney donor, please download our screening form, fill it out and e-mail it to