Kidney Transplant Patient Stories
The University of Maryland Medical Center is considered one of the highest volume kidney transplant programs in the country, performing more than 300 kidney transplants every year.
Here are a few of our patients and their stories.
Living Donor Kidney Transplants
Lee Adams and Marla Zielinski
Lee Adams and Marla Zielinski met in 2008 through the University of Maryland Transplant Center’s Donor Buddy Program. Both donated kidneys to loved ones and became lifelong friends because of the process.
Jim and Susan Schneider
Jim Schneider was diagnosed with diabetes at 17. Since then, he experienced a number of medical complications.
He had a successful pancreas transplantation in 1999 at UMMC, but his diabetes had still damaged his kidneys and he eventually required a kidney transplant, too. His wife, Susan, was his donor.
Joseph and Donna Arcieri
As Joseph's kidney disease worsened over time, he knew he had to make a change. When medications, regular exercise and healthy eating weren't enough, his sister Donna stepped up to be his living kidney donor.
Solaiuman and Yousef Alobaid
When Yousef Alobaid elected to donate his kidney to Solaiuman, he was shocked to find out that his kidney had three arteries instead of the usual one. The pair traveled all the way from Saudi Arabia for complex transplant surgery at UMMC.
Lenox Trams and Jill Garvey
Lenox Trams, an Easton police officer, received a new lease on life with a kidney transplant from coworker Jill Garvey.
After a horrific automobile accident, Elisa was in need of a new kidney. Her brother agreed to be her living donor, but his kidney's multiple renal arteries complicated the surgery. Luckily, UMMC has a proven track record of successfully performing the procedure. Elisa and her brother trekked 3,000 miles from Seattle for surgery.
Mindy Lam and Kai Sia
Mindy’s unhealthy, non-stop NYC lifestyle caught up to her in the form of end-stage renal failure. Kai saw her mother’s faltering health and decided to turn her own life around in order to be well enough to donate her kidney to her mom.
Dennis Negley and John Gatten
John’s kidney was the 1,000th removed via a minimally invasive method at UMMC. He donated to his brother in law, Dennis, who came to UMMC with kidney disease as a result of diabetes.
When Kristen left UMMC after donating her kidney, the only evidence of surgery was a Band-Aid covering the single-incision site in her belly button.
Ma’ake and Christopher Kemoeatu
Brothers and successful NFL players Ma’ake and Christopher now enjoy a feeling even better than winning a Super Bowl ring: the special bond between an organ recipient and donor.
Routine blood work after a knee injury revealed another serious ailment: Bob’s kidneys were failing, operating at only 8-10% of full function. Upon hearing Bob’s story, an old friend elected to be his donor. Now, Bob is back to doing what he loves most: skateboarding!
Traditional Kidney Transplants
Lisa Heaton had polycystic kidney disease but never showed signs that the disease was in advanced stages. But in 2014, symptoms for end-stage renal disease showed. She eventually received a kidney transplantation at the University of Maryland Medical center.
A severe case of strep throat caused Brian to go into kidney failure. Before he could be eligible for a transplant, he needed to lose a lot of weight. While on dialysis, Brian was approved for gastric bypass surgery, and one year later he received a kidney transplant.
When Ken was diagnosed with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, he also learned that his kidney function was in decline. Luck was on his side one Father’s Day when he learned that both organs were available. Ken received a liver and kidney transplant on the same day in a 10-hour surgery.
When Dean’s wife Linda was ruled ineligible to be his living donor, his doctors at Inova Fairfax referred the Haledjians to UMMC. Dean was able to transfer his 1,000+ days on the organ waiting list from his previous hospital to UMMC, and he received a transplant less than a month later.
A case of strep throat caused Betty’s kidneys to fail, which in turn caused her to go blind. A kidney transplant was her only hope of restoring her eyesight. Now, more than four decades later, Betty’s transplanted kidney is still going strong!
Simultaneous bilateral nephrectomy and transplant for PKD Patients
PKD runs in Helen's family, and both her brother and sister had the disease. Unlike her siblings, Helen had cysts on her liver and ovaries as well. Not only did Helen undergo a kidney transplant at UMMC, she also received a new liver here as well.
Madhu knew she would need a kidney transplant from a young age. When she was diagnosed with polycystic kidney disease (PKD) in her 20s, she began her search for a donor.
Jamie Cadiz and Scott Clarke
In addition to needing a kidney transplant, both of Jamie’s cystic kidneys needed to be simultaneously removed in a procedure called a bilateral nephrectomy. When other transplant centers would not take her complex case, UMMC’s multidisciplinary surgical team stepped up to provide Jamie with the care she needed after Scott agreed to donate.
Peter and Wendy Micca
When Peter learned that UMMC surgeons routinely remove PKD kidneys and transplant a new organ in one surgery, he and his wife journeyed from New York to Baltimore for a life-changing opportunity.
Non-Directed Donors and Paired Kidney Exchange (PKE)
Wayne and Michelle Hubbard
Wayne's kidneys were failing due to PKD and his wife Michelle was not a match. Then they learned about the paired kidney exchange program. She donated a kidney to someone out of state, and Wayne received a kidney from another out of state donor.
“Even though I didn’t get a kidney from her, I got a kidney because of her.”
David Feldman and Court Blatchford
David had been on dialysis for five years and knew something had to change. When his wife Frances was found to not be a match, they learned about joining a kidney chain. Court, an altruistic donor and a match for David, gave his kidney to David while Frances’s kidney went to another family.
Four-Way Kidney Exchange
Ed volunteered to donate a kidney to the person of greatest need (referred to as a non-directed donor), which made the four-way exchange possible and started the chain.
Emmet and his wife Julie knew that family friend Sean Menard, 10, needed a kidney to avoid going on dialysis. Although neither Emmet nor Julie was a match for Sean, the UMMC transplant team asked Emmet if he would be part of a PKE that would result in Sean getting a kidney.
Sean’s kidneys have been failing since birth, due to a congenital abnormality. It was at the point where Sean would have needed dialysis had he not received a new kidney soon.
Stacey and her husband Carl came to UMMC from their home in Florida. Carl faced the prospect of dialysis because of end-stage renal disease. Since Stacey was not a match for Carl, they both entered the PKE program.
Other Kidney Transplant Services
Simultaneous Pancreas and Kidney Transplant
Nakia managed her kidney failure with dialysis for two years. During that time she was on the kidney transplant waiting list, but never received a call. Nakia was also diabetic, and at a regular checkup at UMMC she learned that she could get a kidney transplant much faster if she also listed for a pancreas transplant.
Dialysis Access Clinic in Easton
Living on Smith Island proved to be a challenge when Joan had to switch from peritoneal dialysis (which she could do in her own home) to hemodialysis (which must be administered by a health care professional). The Dialysis Access Clinic at UM Shore Medical Center at Easton became an invaluable and convenient resource to Joan, who did not have to relocate for more than a month.
To speak with someone about our services, please call 410-328-5408 or 1-800-492-5538.