Memorial Transplant Institute Performs its 100th Kidney Transplant
17-year-old teen from Fort Myers is the most recent kidney recipient
COVID-19 has not deterred the team of experts at Memorial Transplant Institute who recently performed its 100th kidney transplant. This is a significant milestone for the adult and pediatric Kidney Transplant program, which received accreditation in 2017. Frederick Massey, a 17-year-old teen from Fort Myers, Florida, was the 100th life saved, receiving a kidney in late July.
Frederick was a healthy football player living a normal life with big dreams of playing professional football. In December 2019, his mother noticed he wasn’t eating and drinking as much as usual. She believed he was sad due to the illness of a close relative, until his face began to retain water, so she rushed him to the nearest hospital, where he was found to have a blood pressure of 200 over 130mmHg, nearly twice the average of 120 over 80. After intensive testing, he was diagnosed with end-stage renal disease.
Since December 2019, Frederick underwent several surgeries in order to start dialysis treatments. His last dialysis treatment took more than 11 hours, making him feel defeated and exhausted given all the dietary restrictions and inability to have a normal teenage lifestyle. The very next day, on July 25, 2020, he received the call of a lifetime informing him that a kidney was available, which led him and his family to immediately take the two hour drive from Fort Myers to Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital.
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“I didn’t stop fighting, I knew I couldn’t give up on myself, because I needed to be strong for myself and my family,” Frederick said. “I’m very grateful because my doctors went through a lot of work to get this for me, and I will treasure this gift forever.”
The Memorial Transplant Institute is the only center in Broward County, and one of only two programs in South Florida, to offer pediatric and adult kidney transplants. The institute’s success is due to a multi-disciplinary approach to total kidney care provided by a team of experts who offer highly coordinated, customized care before, during and after transplant surgery.
“Kidney transplantation is a multidisciplinary team sport for everyone involved, so achieving 100 transplants in just three years is a success for the entire team,” said Dr. Juan Arenas, Chief, Memorial Transplant Institute. “Every time we give a patient an organ, we give them a new lease on life, and we could not be prouder to continue these life-saving surgeries to help patients like Frederick live healthier lives for years to come.”
Dr. Arenas leads the comprehensive kidney transplant team including: surgeons, nephrologists, anesthesiologists, intensivists, imaging technologists and nurse practitioners, and support team of psychologists, social workers, nutritionists, financial coordinators and pharmacists.
In the past three years, 1,088 end-stage renal disease (ESRD) patients have been evaluated at the Memorial Transplant Institute. While 101 patients have received life-saving kidney transplants, 120 adults and four pediatric patients remain on the kidney transplant waiting list. Additionally, approximately 140 transplanted patients are followed in the post-transplant adult and pediatric clinics, many of whom received kidney transplants elsewhere and have since transferred their post-operative care to Memorial.
Memorial Transplant Institute is based at Memorial Regional Hospital and includes Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital. For more information about kidney transplantation or donation, call 954-265-7450 or visit mhs.net/services/transplant.