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When diabetes causes kidney failure and dialysis is a daily activity, a kidney transplant becomes the only way to restore normal kidney function. And though such a transplant eliminates the need for dialysis, it does not cure diabetes, the underlying cause of the kidney disease.

However, simultaneous pancreas-kidney (SPK) transplants can eliminate both kidney failure and diabetes with one operation.

University of Maryland Medical Center, long a leader in kidney transplantation, led the United States in performing this innovative double-organ transplant in 2018.

Our experience in this operation and as an academic and clinical leader in the field of transplantation are among the reasons our program recorded some of the best post-transplant outcomes in the nation.

Waiting List for Pancreas-Kidney Transplants

The time on an organ waiting list for all transplants vary greatly. However, typically the wait time for a pancreas and kidney together is much shorter than that of a kidney alone.

At UMMC, that difference can translate into as much as five years shorter for SPK.

Pancreas and Living Donor Kidney Transplants

While typically both organs come from the same deceased donor, at UMMC we can also do a transplant from a deceased pancreas donor and a living kidney donor in the same procedure. Learn more about living donor kidney transplants.

Who is a Candidate for an SPK Transplant?

At UMMC, we consider each patient individually to determine whether a transplant will be beneficial and what type would be best.

If you take at least 10 units of insulin daily for type 1 or 2 diabetes and have kidney failure, we will evaluate you for this procedure. Use our pancreas transplant candidate form to submit your information to begin the process to see if SPK might be right for you.

Read more about pancreas transplants.