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Lamar Odom: Why His Drug Abuse Will Hold Up Kidney Transplant

Tue, October 27, 2015 2:49pm EDT by 4 Comments

Lamar Odom’s long history of drug abuse could be a major roadblock toward getting him a new kidney. A top LA doctor explains to HollywoodLife.com EXCLUSIVELY why Lamar’s past might halt his hopes of getting a transplant for his failing organs.

Lamar Odom, 35, has an alleged history with drugs that could make the likelihood of receiving a kidney transplant, or even getting on the list for one, very difficult. HollywoodLife.com talked to a Los Angeles urologist, and found out what it will take for Lamar to qualify for the donor list. Check out the EXCLUSIVE details here.

“In order to qualify for a kidney transplant, there are certain criteria that a person needs to qualify for before they can even be put on the list,” Dr. S. Adam Ramin, Urologist and Medical Director of Urology Cancer Specialists in Los Angeles, tells HollywoodLife.com EXCLUSIVELY. “They have to have a drug free life. Patients who have addictions to alcohol or drugs have to show they are clean before they are placed on the list.”

Lamar likely can’t claim to be clean, as he was allegedly found to have cocaine in his system when he arrived at Sunrise Hospital, unconscious, on Oct. 13. Though he says that he’s finished with drugs, proving to doctors that he has really changed his lifestyle will be much more difficult. “The person has to show they are truly going to be living cleanly,” says Dr. Ramin, “which can take months to a year depending on the severity of their addiction. If you have a long standing addiction, you have to show you remained drug free. You cannot declare yourself drug free a week ago”

The wait list for getting a kidney can take anywhere from six months to two years, according to Dr. Ramin. Doctors want to be sure that a donated kidney will not be wasted on a patient that isn’t serious about their health and their life, as the upkeep of a transplant is a lot of work. “It is not a walk in the park after a person gets a transplant,” Dr. Ramin adds. “It requires constant monitoring and a highly compliant patient. You have to lead a clean life. Once and awhile having a little alcohol is okay, but you need to be relatively alcohol, and of course, drug free.”

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It will be very difficult for Lamar to get on the list for a kidney from a donor, but that doesn’t mean he’s out of options. Rob Kardashian has reportedly offered to give up one of his own kidneys to his brother-in-law, but he would have to meet very specific qualifications to be found as a match. Currently, Lamar is on dialysis to help his kidneys flush out toxins while doctors figure out the next move. We wish the best for Lamar — hopefully he can prove he’ll stay drug-free and get healthy soon.

HollywoodLifers, do you think Lamar will qualify for a new kidney? Tell us your thoughts below.

— Emy LaCroix, Reporting by Jon Boon