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Chief of Kidney and Pancreas Transplantation
HQ Phone:  (410) 369-5200
Direct Phone: (410) ***-****
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800 West Baltimore Street
About The University of Maryland: The highly regarded public University of Maryland was founded in 1856 and has the distinction of being the flagship institution of the University System of Maryland. With nearly 38,000 students, it is the largest university in... more.
Assistant Professor of Surgery
Program Director Transplant Fellowship
National Kidney Foundation Inc
New York Organ Donor Network Inc
Medical Advisory Board Member
Temple University School of Medicine
David Leeser, MD
Director, Fellowship Training Ph: 410 328.5408
David B. Leeser, M.D., F.A.C.S.
David B. Leeser, M.D., F.A.C.S. Dr. Leeser is an associate professor of surgery at the University of Maryland School of Medicine and Chief of Kidney and Pancreas Transplantation and Director of the Fellowship in Transplantation at the University of Maryland Medical Center. He received his medical degree from Temple University School of Medicine and completed his general surgical residency at Temple University. Following residency, he completed a fellowship in transplant surgery at the University of Maryland Medical Center. After completing his fellowship, Dr. Leeser served in the United States Army. During his time in the service, Dr. Leeser was deployed twice in support of operation Iraqi Freedom and became the Director of Kidney and Pancreas Transplantation at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center. Prior to retiring from the Army, Dr. Leeser rose to the rank of Lieutenant Colonel and was awarded the Bronze Star for his service in Iraq while running a combat support hospital. After leaving the Army, he served as assistant professor of surgery at Weill-Cornell Medical College and the Director of Pancreas Transplantation at New York-Presbyterian Hospital Weill-Cornell Medical Center in Manhattan. Dr. Leeser has special interests in research pertaining to hemodialysis access and surgical education. Dr. Leeser specializes in kidney and pancreas transplantation, single port donor nephrectomy, and minimally invasive hemodialysis access surgery. Dr. Leeser has been named to the 2012 Super Docs and to the Best Doctors 2010-2012 in New York City.
"We worked closely with the National Kidney Registry, which coordinated the 28-person swap that led to a compatible living donor for our patient," says David B. Leeser, MD, associate professor of surgery at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UM SOM) and chief of kidney and pancreas transplant at the University of Maryland Medical Center (UMMC), who developed the plan.
Leeser explained that University of Maryland surgeons routinely remove both polycystic kidneys during a transplant, with one team working in one operating room, and another team in an adjacent OR to procure the donor organ. While another center had combined PKD removal with a PKE swap for a patient who was already on dialysis, this procedure was especially complex due to the need for precise timing in the absence of dialysis. Leeser and his team developed a detailed plan for this case, including backup plans to minimize any risks or problems, such as a delay in the arrival of the donor kidney. The team was prepared to initiate an immediate dialysis session, but it was not needed. They also had a backup plan to keep the paired kidney chain going in the event they could not complete the PKD procedure. Another compatible recipient was available to accept the donor organ, if needed. Leeser says the entire process was almost seamless.
Surgeon David Leeser says chronic cases are the most frustrating.David Leeser, M.D.Transplant SurgeonUniversity of Maryland Medical CenterDavid Leeser, M.D."It could be removed, but when you did remove the entire pancreas you knew you were going to get bad diabetes."To stop diabetes from developing, surgeons transplant a patient's own islet cells into the liver.There, they can thrive and produce insulin, which regulates blood sugar levels.David Leeser, M.D.David Leeser, M.D., a transplant surgeon at the University of Maryland, says, "It could be removed, but when you did remove the entire pancreas you knew you were going to get bad diabetes."To stop diabetes from developing after removing the pancreas, Dr. Leeser is transplanting islet cells into the liver of the patient.Dr. Leeser says, "With our ability to isolate islets from the pancreas and put them into the liver, we can go to the operating room, we can remove the patient's pancreas, which is causing the pain, we can bring it to our lab here, and we can digest it down and then we can give the patient back their own islet cells."By giving the patient their own islet cells, there is no risk of the body rejecting the transplanted cells.Dr. Leeser says, "These patients have a 50- to 75-percent chance of not needing insulin after the transplant.
Guest Speaker: David B. Leeser, MDTransplant SurgeonClinical Director of Islet Cell TransplantUniversity of MarylandDr. David B. Leeser will be the first guest on Diabetes Station's new Wednesday evening Pancreas Transplant Exchange with Tom Csiba.