Preparing for a Pancreas Transplant
Each transplant candidate is different and has unique medical and psychosocial issues that must be considered. An evaluation is necessary to assure the transplant team that each patient:
- Is an appropriate candidate for transplantation
- Can safely undergo a major surgical procedure
- Has no medical, psychological or other problems that should be corrected before transplantation
- Has a reasonable chance of benefiting from transplantation over the long term
- Is likely to be compliant with taking immunosuppressive and other medications and returning for clinic visits
- Will be able to afford post-transplant immunosuppressive drugs
It is important for the transplant team to know as much as possible about each potential pancreas candidate. A specific referral is required for each potential candidate. All referrals must be done under the direction of a patient's pancreas/kidney doctor or primary doctor.
Paying for Evaluation and Transplantation
The evaluations and surgery are paid for by several methods, including managed care, commercial insurance, Renal Medicare and Florida Medicaid. A hospital financial counselor sees every potential transplant candidate. The counselor will confirm your insurance coverage, discuss your financial responsibility and tell you about the different options that may be available to you.
There are other sources you may qualify for based on financial need. The Pharmacy Services Representatives are willing to discuss the details of these sources with you before you make your decision about transplantation.
After your evaluation has been completed, the transplant team will make recommendations to your referring doctor. After you have completed everything the transplant team requires you to do and they have reviewed all your test results, we will add your name to the pancreas waiting list.
It is in your best interest to complete all tests and dental work as soon as possible. Once the transplant team has a full picture of your current health status, they will proceed with plans for your pancreas transplant. The waiting period for a well-matched pancreas may take several months to a year, depending on your blood type, your transplant antigens and your antibody level.