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Experiences of ABO-Incompatible Living Donor Kidney Transplantation Recipients

Kim, Oksoo1; Choi, Kyungsook2

doi: 10.1097/

1Seoul National University Hospital, Seoul, Korea; 2Red Cross College of Nursing, Chung-Ang University, Seoul, Korea.

The purpose of this study was to examine what ABOi LDKT recipients experience before and after transplantation and to understand their experience in the personal, family, social and cultural context. A micro-ethnographic[1][2] research was attempted to provide background data for the development of effective nursing intervention strategies which will actually help transplant patients adapt to their transplantations. Participants of this study were 10 ABOi LDKT recipients over the age of 20 who have received the kidney transplantation surgery six months ago and who are currently outpatients at a general hospital in Seoul. The data was collected from December 23, 2015 until May 6, 2016 and was collected through a semi-structured questionnaire along with individual in-depth interviews, field notes from participant observation and available medical records. The methodology in Roper & Shapiro (2000)[3]was used for this study. The findings of this study in regards to the unique experience and culture of ABOi LDKT recipients were as follows. 1. Donor relations between married couples were established after ABOi LDKT became possible, and recipients were in control with hopeful and positive thoughts after experiencing advanced medical technology. 2. Participants experienced joy in hearing about the miraculous possibility of ABOi LDKT and had high hopes for their new lives, but also suffered from the difficult process of finding their donors. 3. Participants willingly endured the side effects and discomfort caused by desensitization treatments before their surgery, including the plasmapheresis and administration of immunosuppressants. 4. Participants endured ABOi LDKT despite of complications and acute rejections post-surgery, such as reoperation and treatment due to hemorrhage, renal failure and infections. In conclusion, the ABOi LDKT led to the formation of donation culture between couples. Participants were shown to achieve self-control with hopeful and positive ideas after their encounter with new medical technologies. The relationship between recipient and donor became closer after the transplantation and both recipients and donors raised their concerns towards each other’s health. Participants who have lived a negative and passive life before the transplant were transformed into positive and active people after surgery.




1. Agar, M. H. (1980). The professional stranger: An informal introduction to ethnography. San Diego, CA: Academic Press.

2. Agar, M. H. (1980). Speaking of ethnography. Qualitative Research Methods Series. Sage Publications.

3. Roper, J. M., & Shapira, J.(2000). Ethnography In Nursing Research. London: Sage Publications, Inc. 1-150.

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