The most critical part of kidney transplantation is preventing rejection of the graft kidney.

  1. Different transplant centers use different drug combinations to fight rejection of a transplanted kidney.
  2. The drugs work by suppressing your immune system, which is programmed to reject anything "foreign," such as a new organ.
  3. Some of the most common immune-suppressing drugs used is,
  4. Cyclosporine: This drug interferes with communication between the T cells of the immune system. It is started immediately after the transplant to suppress the immune system and continued indefinitely.
  5. Corticosteroids: These drugs block T-cell communication as well. They are usually given at high doses for a short period immediately after the transplant and again if rejection is suspected.
  6. Azathioprine: This drug slows the production of T cells in the immune system. Azathioprine is usually used for long-term maintenance of immunosuppression.
  7. Newer antirejection drugs include tacrolimus, sirolimus, and mizoribin, among others.
  8. Other costly and experimental treatments include using antibodies to attack specific parts of the immune system to decrease its response.