Comprehensive Nephrology Care

The Section of Nephrology at Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center is comprised of a collegial group of academic-based and private nephrologists committed to teaching and mentoring in their role as attending physicians for Baylor Medicine. Every month, the team performs over 800 inpatient dialysis treatments. We employ all dialysis modalities, including all modalities of continuous renal replacement therapies.

Over the years, the section of Nephrology at Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center has consistently achieved a High Performing designation for nephrology from U.S. News and World Report. In 2013, our nephrology unit became the first in the nation to receive a Beacon Award from the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses (AACN). And in 2019, Baylor St. Luke’s received our fifth consecutive Magnet Recognition®, a designation from the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) and the highest national honor for professional nursing practice. We are now among the 4% of hospitals in the U.S. that have achieved this designation five times.

Outstanding Transplant Outcomes in the Nation’s Fourth-Largest City

Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center’s Kidney Transplant Program is dedicated to providing the highest level of patient care and expanding the frontiers of basic and clinical investigation in nephrology and transplantation. Our program has performed more than 2,100 kidney transplants since 1986.
The program is in a rapid expansion phase under the leadership of Dr. Bhamidipati V. Murthy, MD, Baylor St. Luke’s Transplant Medical Director; Dr. Katherine Timmins, Baylor St. Luke’s Kidney Transplant Program Director; and Dr. Christine O’Mahony, Surgical Director of Kidney Transplantation at Baylor St. Luke’s.
The kidney transplant outcomes at Baylor St. Luke’s rank #1 in the state of Texas and are in the top 5% in the nation, as reported by the Scientific Registry for Transplant Recipients (SRTR).
Baylor St. Luke’s has an innovative “donor swap program,” both internal and external. Over the years, we have performed multiple paired kidney exchanges, or “kidney swaps,” between living donors — including a 13-way, multi-hospital kidney swap. This option enables donors who may not be a match for their loved one to donate to another patient. In turn, the donor’s loved one receives a living donor kidney transplant from another pair with similar circumstances.
Our living donor kidney program is also one of the best in the country with Dr. Richard Link, urologist at Baylor Medicine, as the principal Living Donor Surgeon.
Nephrology and kidney transplantation services at Baylor St. Luke’s also includes multi-organ transplants. The nephrology team has over 20 years of experience providing support for patients with mechanical heart assist devices (LVADs) and Total Artificial Hearts.
Nephrology and transplantation services at Baylor St. Luke’s trains the leaders of tomorrow. The Nephrology Fellowship program at Baylor College of Medicine, a highly rated program in the country, gives extensive training in all aspects of nephrology and transplantation. The graduates of this program have become leaders in nephrology and transplantation and are now heading prestigious departments and large private practice groups, delivering excellent care to the community. The divisions of Nephrology and Abdominal Transplantation are at the forefront and cutting edge of research.
In addition to a large number of publications, at the American Transplant Congress 2019, the group excelled with a large number of oral and poster presentations and a plenary presentation. A large group of medical students are actively being mentored in “Outcomes Research” by one of our surgeons, Dr. Abbas Rana.
Katherine Timmins, MD
Chief of Staff, Nephrology Section Chief at Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center
Bhamidipati V. Murthy, MD, DM, MBBS
Associate Professor of Surgery, Baylor College of Medicine
Christine O’Mahony, MD
Surgical Director of Kidney Transplantation, Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center

Going the Distance for Transplant

Dr. Ahmed Awan received a call from Dr. Bhamidipati V. Ramana Murthy, Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center’s Transplant Medical Director, just before 11 p.m. Dr. Murthy was trying to locate a patient to receive a newly acquired kidney. If the team couldn’t get in touch with Ronald Mitchell within the next hour, the kidney would have to go to the next recipient in line.
Dr. Awan spoke with Ronald’s primary nephrologist, the Director of Dialysis, and even called 911 to help track down the patient. All to no avail, Dr. Awan checked the patient’s address and noticed he only lived 15 miles from his own home, so he decided to find Ronald himself.
He arrived at the address, which happened to be Ronald’s sister’s home, but he wasn’t home. Ronald’s phone had apparently broken that same day, but his sister was able to reach who he was with and wake him up. Ronald called the transplant coordinator right away, and he received a successful kidney transplant the very next morning.
Ahmed Awan, MD

Assistant Professor, Section of Nephrology,
Baylor College of Medicine

Patient Story

Meant to Be: Wife Joins Kidney Exchange Program for Husband

What started out as a love story between Tracy and her husband ended with proof that these two were meant to be together.
Tracy’s husband was diagnosed with kidney failure in September of 2017. Tracy remembers finding him passed out due to pain with less than 8% kidney function.
Immediately, this duo began searching for a donor. After waiting to match with a deceased donor failed, Tracy decided to get tested as a living organ donor. Although she was not a match for her husband, this prompted Tracy to join the paired kidney exchange list.
The paired kidney exchange program allows medically incompatible donor/recipient pairs to find and create other compatible pairs. You can become a living donor on behalf of your loved one even if you do not medically match. This list allows an exchange providing two or more recipients with an active match.
“The hardest part was seeing him go through dialysis three days per week,” remembers Tracy. “And this is just what you do when you love someone.”
Just over 2 ½ years after diagnosis, a paired match was found, and this couple went into surgery. Six months after surgery, both Tracy and her husband live a relatively normal life. They enjoy their jobs and time with each other.
“We chose Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center because based on the numbers, we had the best chance of receiving a transplant,” said Tracy. “It all worked out. Going through this process proved that we were meant to be together.”