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Artificial Kidney Latest News: The Kidney Project's implantable artificial kidney with Dr. Roy


Episode 122: Artificial Kidney Latest News: The Kidney Project's implantable artificial kidney with Dr. Roy. Shuvo Roy, a professor in the UCSF Department of Bioengineering and Therapeutic Sciences, and his colleagues are developing an implantable, fully functional artificial kidney. The implantable artificial kidney would perform all the functions of the human kidney - eliminating the need for donor kidneys and dialysis.

The implantable bioartificial kidney is meant to be a permanent treatment to kidney failure and we are pushing maximum efforts to bring this to reality. Our current testing and research suggest that the artificial kidney could possibly operate for many years without failing. If failure occurs, the replacement of the filter and/or cells would likely involve a minimally invasive surgery. Medical innovations, like this device, can create new possibilities for those living with kidney disease.

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Nearly 750,000 Americans -- and two million people around the world -- are treated for end-stage renal disease (ESRD), and rates of kidney disease are growing rapidly, leading to an urgent shortage of kidneys for transplant. As of 2016 there were only 21,000 donor kidneys available for transplant in the U.S. on a waiting list of nearly 100,000 and extending five to ten years.

Most patients awaiting a kidney transplant survive by undergoing long and cumbersome dialysis treatments multiple times a week to clear toxins from their blood, but dialysis does not replace many essential kidney functions and on average, only 35 percent of dialysis patients remain alive after five years. Dialysis and other treatments for ESRD, which are universally covered by Medicare, cost $35 billion in 2016, representing seven percent of Medicare's annual budget.

The Kidney Project is led by Roy and Vanderbilt University Medical Center nephrologist William H. Fissell, MD, who for more than a decade have been working to develop an implantable bioartificial kidney with the goal of eliminating dialysis and easing the shortage of donor kidneys.

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IMPORTANT: This video is intended to be informational only. It is not a medical consultation, nor is it personalized medical advice. This video is not meant to replace a physician's advice, supervision, and counsel. For medical advice, please consult your physician.

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