Generous organ donor sets in motion kidney swap for 6 patients

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Jeff Ehling reports how one person in need of a kidney triggered a swap that saved several lives (KTRK)

It can take years for a patient in need of a kidney to get a transplant, but thanks to the generosity of one donor, six people now have new kidneys.

It is one of the largest organ donation swaps in Texas.

It started with a simple question during a routine medical procedure -- Do you have both of your kidneys? The answer set into motion a chain of events that is hard to imagine and gave half a dozen people a new lease on life.

You may have never heard of a kidney swap, but it does happen. When a living donor is available to give a kidney to someone in need, that kidney is tested to see if it will be a good match.

Sometimes the kidney would work better in a different person. In that case, if there are two living donors, a swap is worked out.

In this case, six swaps were worked out allowing six living donors to give kidneys to six people in need and it all happened at Methodist Hospital in the Houston Medical Center.

Monday the 6 patients met their donors for the first time.

Nurse Dana Edson was the first person to get the swap started by asking a patient if she had both kidneys. The answer was no and the reason was because that patient had donated a kidney to her own son years earlier.

But that kidney was failing. Dana agreed to donate her kidney to the patient's son but the kidney was a better match for someone else and the swap was on.

Today all six patients and all six donors are healthy and happy.

Related Topics:
healthorgan donationsmethodist hospitalgood newsHouston
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