New twist: Kidney donor chain involving pediatric hospital

SEATTLE, Washington (WPVI) -- A Washington state teenager is celebrating what he calls his rebirth after a kidney transplant.

19-year-old Nigel Dalton was part of something new - a kidney donor chain involving a children's hospital.

Nigel has had kidney damage since birth.

His mother wanted to donate her kidney but wasn't a match.

So they joined a kidney chain.

She donated her kidney to a stranger, and her son got a matching kidney from a young man in California.

In total, the chain involved 14 donors and 14 recipients across the country.

"It's been an amazing breakthrough that's been more rapidly adopted in adult transplantation. We were excited to be able to offer it and enroll our patients in that program," says Dr. Patrick Healey, Seattle Children's Hospital.

Nigel is thrilled.

"I won't have to do dialysis anymore. Hopefully I am going to live a life that I've already been living," he says.

Without the kidney chain, Nigel would have gone on the waiting list.

The average wait time is three to five years.

That's one reason kidney chains are becoming much more common.

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