What is The Difference Between SPK Transplantation and Islet Cell Transplantation

SPK or Simultaneous Pancreas-Kidney transplantation is a process where type I diabetic patients are operated for both kidney and pancreatic transplants simultaneously. 75% of diabetic patients also suffer from kidney damage and chronic renal failure. Thus SPK transplantation refers to pancreatic transplantation in conjunction with kidney transplants in those patients suffering from both diabetes and kidney problems.

Islet transplantation is done in patients who suffer only from insulin dependent diabetes and their kidneys are not yet affected. In that islet cells from deceased donors are isolated and transplanted into the patients’ pancreas so that they produce fresh insulin to digest sugars and cure the diabetes.