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Lamar Odom Needs Kidney Transplant: Will He Step to Head of Line?

Khloe Kardashian has put her relationship with James Harden on hold while she tends to Lamar Odom. Will he get preferential treatment for a kidney? (Photo: Instagram)

Khloe Kardashian has put her relationship with James Harden on hold while she tends to Lamar Odom. Will he get preferential treatment for a kidney? (Photo: Instagram)

Lamar Odom’s destructive bender at a brothel in Las Vegas nearly cost him his life and left his internal organs ravaged. Now he needs a kidney transplant, according to reports. His condition raises a question: Will he’ll get preferential treatment, or get in line like everyone else.

Odom makes his home in California, and the state has one of the longest waiting times to receive a kidney transplant in the nation.

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If the kidney is coming from an organ donation, the wait is four to seven years, according to Dr. William Bry, surgical director, Kidney Transplant Program at Sutter Health, CPMC.

The state’s population and the number of individuals in California needing a transplant both contribute to situation, says Bry, writing on the California Pacific Medical Center’s Web site.

Of course, the best match often comes from a family member. Father Joe Odom could be a potential donor. He’s been a heroin addict for years, although now clean.

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His mother died of colon cancer when he was 12 years old. He has two children living from his first marriage, but they are too young to be donors.

Unless he has aunts, uncles or other distant relatives willing to step forward, he will have no choice but to get in line for a donor transplant.

On the other hand, with a live donor, a transplant can take place as soon as all tests are completed and a match is established, according to the UCLA Medical Center.

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The fact that he needs a kidney because of self-destructive behavior will put him low on the list of priority patients.

Celebrities all too often get preferential treatment, and Odom can also count on the Kardashian’s clout to move him to the head of the line.

His estranged wife Khloe Kardashian maintained a bedside vigil through his ordeal and has reportedly put her relationship with James Harden on hold, according to gossip site TMZ.

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She posted this statement today on her Web site:

“The past week has been incredibly difficult. I am so thankful to family, friends, and fans, who have sent nothing but prayers and well wishes to Lamar. I also want to take a moment to thank everyone at Sunrise Hospital, including the amazing doctors and nurses for their kindness and diligent work. Under their amazing care, incredible strides have been made. You can never be prepared for an experience like this, but without the outpouring of love and endless prayers that Lamar has received and the strength I was given from my loved ones, it would have been difficult to endure. Thank you for your continued support. God is great!!!”

Right now, more than 60,000 potential recipients nationwide are on the waiting list, according to the The United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS).

That means Lamar could be forced to undergo dialysis for the next three to seven years, until a suitable donor is found. Will he wait that long?

Let us know your thoughts and be sure to follow IM on Twitter for the latest celebrity news.


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