Patient Transfers Wait Time and Gets a Transplant

Dean and Linda Haledjian

Man Gets Kidney Transplant Less Than One Month After Transferring Wait Time to UMMC

Dean Haledjian had spent more than 1,000 days on the transplant wait list at his local transplant center and was most eager to get off dialysis. As a professor atNorthern Virginia Community College, it was physically and logistically challenging to fit dialysis appointments into his teaching schedule.

Earlier in the year, his wife, Linda, offered to be his living donor but was ruled ineligible by their local transplant team due to a shortened renal artery that made her case too surgically complex. Doctors at INOVA Fairfax referred both Dean and Linda to the University of Maryland Medical Center (UMMC) where surgeons are adept in performing complex transplants. 

After more than 1,000 days on the wait list at INOVA Fairfax, Dean was eager to make progress towards a transplant.

Dean and Linda traveled to UMMC in Baltimore to begin Linda’s work-up as a living donor with this new transplant team. While reviewing her records, Dr. Stephen Bartlett, Peter Angelos Distinguished Professor and Chair, Department of Surgery at the University of Maryland School of Medicine, diagnosed Linda with fibromuscular dysplasia, a condition caused by a rush of estrogen into the body when Linda was pregnant years prior. This condition had been overlooked in Linda’s original work-ups, but Bartlett felt it was significant enough to eliminate her as a living donor candidate for her husband. It was more important to protect her kidney health in case she should need a transplant of her own in the future.

While meeting with the Haledjians, Bartlett noticed the 1,000+ days Dean had spent on the wait list in northern Virginia. He encouraged Dean and Linda to consider transferring their wait time to UMMC where time to transplant is shorter than the national average. 

Dean transferred his wait time to UMMC on July 28. On August 21, he received a kidney transplant from a deceased donor, less than one month after transferring to UMMC.

“The transplant program at UMMC is known for having shorter kidney wait times because we are able to perform complex transplants with patients and donors whom other centers may deem too difficult,” said Dr. David Leeser, chief of kidney and pancreas transplant. “We love taking on challenging cases and telling patients, yes, we can transplant you and get you back to a normal life.”

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