News, Special Recognition, and Awards

Paired Exchange Transplantation

Dear Colleagues and Friends,

The Solid Organ Transplantation Joint Program at the Medical College of Wisconsin, Froedtert Health, Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin and BloodCenter of Wisconsin is pleased to announce the commencement of our paired exchange kidney transplantation program through a partnership with the National Kidney Registry (NKR). The NKR provides a national network for matching incompatible living donors with compatible recipients beyond a given donor’s known or local population.

In late November, under the leadership of Dr. Christopher Johnson and assistance of Dr. Allan Roza, our transplant team performed a living donor nephrectomy on a local altruistic donor, a gift of life which started a succession or chain of five kidney transplants across the country. As part of that paired exchange process, a patient from Milwaukee received a kidney two weeks later. A second individual received a kidney transplant at Froedtert Hospital in the first week of December, from another kidney chain. In turn, this second individual’s live donor continued the kidney chain and donated to a recipient in another state.

Active participation in the national paired exchange process provides additional access to organ transplants for our patients. At present, ours is the only organ transplantation program in Milwaukee to offer such services.

As would be expected, the process is quite complex and entails tremendous work and coordination from our transplant team, notably in this instance from Carrie Presser, Director of Transplant Services; Curtis Elliott, Transplant Nephrology Clinical Manager; Cami Meunier, Paired Exchange Coordinator; Jan Rhode and Jenny Crnkovich, Organ Preservationists; and Dr. Kathryn Lauer, Vice Chairman of Anesthesiology and Clinical/Operating Room Service, and the entire transplant team. In addition, we are thankful to the Froedtert Foundation for their unwavering support of our endeavors.

At the end of the day, our organ donors (both living and deceased) are our heroes. We owe a great debt of gratitude to all organ donors for their noble deeds. The Solid Organ Transplantation team at the Medical College of Wisconsin, Froedtert Health, Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin and BloodCenter of Wisconsin is proud to honor the life-giving efforts of altruistic living donors whose generosity directly and profoundly impacts the lives of others – both known and unknown, near and far, family, friend and stranger.


Johnny C. Hong, MD, FACS
Associate Professor of Surgery
The Mark B. Adams Chair in Surgery
Medical College of Wisconsin, Department of Surgery
Divisions of Transplant Surgery and Surgical Oncology
Director, Solid Organ Transplantation Joint Program at
Medical College of Wisconsin-Froedtert Health-
Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin-Blood Center of Wisconsin

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Milwaukee, WI 53226
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