The Immune System and Organ Transplant: What You Should Know
How the Immune System Works
|Neutrophils||Destroy bacteria and fungi|
|Eosinophils||Destroy larger parasites; also involved in allergy-related inflammatory response|
|Basophils||Release histamines, which produce an inflammatory response that help fight infection|
|Lymphocytes—the main defenders of the immune system||
release antibodies, and help activate T-cells
T-cells attack viruses and tumors
|Monocytes||Migrate in bloodstream and help T-cells with recognizing antigens that needs to be destroyed|
The Immune System and Organ Transplant
- Hyperacute rejection—Rare, but can occur within minutes of a transplant.
- Acute rejection—Can occur a few weeks after a transplant, but the greatest risk is within the first 6 months after the transplant.
- Chronic rejection—Can occur months after a transplant. The cause is unknown, but it may be linked to non-adherence to antirejection medications
What to Expect After an Organ Transplant
Health care After Organ Transplant Surgery
Additional Health Concerns
National Institutes of Health http://www.nih.gov
The United Network for Organ Sharing http://www.unos.org
Canadian Association of Transplantation http://www.transplant.ca
Public Health Agency of Canada http://www.phac-aspc.gc.ca
Fishman JA. Infection in solid organ transplant recipients. N Engl J Med. 2007;357(25):2601-2614.
Pace B. Suppressing the immune system for organ transplants. JAMA. 2000;283(18):2484.
Kidney transplantation: Past, present and future: What is chronic rejection? What is being done about it? Stanford University website. Available at: http://web.stanford.edu/dept/HPS/transplant/html/chronic.html. Accessed July 28, 2015.
Understanding the immune system: how it works. Immuno Genetics website. Available at: http://www.imgt.org/IMGTeducation/Tutorials/ImmuneSystem/UK/the%5Fimmune%5Fsystem.pdf. Published September 2003. Accessed July 28, 2015.
What is a heart transplant? National Heart, Lung, and Blood institute website. Available at: http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/health-topics/topics/ht. Updated January 3, 2012. Accessed July 28, 2015.
- Reviewer: Michael Woods, MD
- Review Date: 07/2015 -
- Update Date: 10/16/2013 -
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