What challenges will I face?

Taking medicine every day at the right time and in the right way is really important to keep your new kidney healthy. 

The medicine works by weakening your immune system so that your immune system does not reject your new kidney.

This medicine does have some side effects. Many of these side effects will go away after a period of time.

The most common side effects are:

  • infections
  • puffiness around the face and abdomen
  • unwanted hair growth or hair loss
  • weight gain
  • mood swings
  • high blood pressure 
  • acne and pimples
  • muscle weakness.


Because the medicine will make your skin more sensitive, you will have a higher risk of getting skin cancer. 

You will need to take special care when you are out in the sun.

This includes wearing sunblock and covering up when you are outdoors. 

You should also get your moles and freckles checked every 6–12 months after your transplant. 

Occasionally, some recipients develop diabetes as a result of their medicine.

However, it is really important that you do not stop taking your medicine, even if you are having these side effects.

There is also a risk of some other types of cancer after a kidney transplant. 

For most recipients, cancer is not a problem after their transplant. 

Women need to have a cervical smear test every year and well as regular mammograms. 

Men should have regular prostate checks done. 

It is also really important to go to all your appointments with your kidney doctor and family doctor.