By Dr M. Vidhyasagar Reddy
Consultant General Laparoscopic Surgeon
Published on 09/08/2022
Donating an organ can be one of the noblest ways to give a new lease of life to someone.Did you know?
A single donor can help transform the lives of more than 10 people with the gift of life! Yes, it’s right, your donation can save more than 10 lives, and one tissue donor (someone who can donate tendons, bone, connective tissue, cartilage, skin, sclera, corneas and heart valves and vessels) can heal the lives of more than 75 people.
In the case of organ transplant surgery, the doctors are racing against time. As the preservation time of organs (shelf life of organ) before the donation is crucial to maintain donor organ quality, that closely correlates with morbidity and survival following a transplant.
Pledge for Organ Donation:
Organ donation is the surgical removal of an organ (kidney, liver, heart and pancreas) from the donor which is then transplanted in another person (the recipient) whose organ has failed. Organ donation is the noblest act of humanity. This day inspires people to commit to organ donation after death. Become an organ donor and give someone one of the most precious gifts- The Gift of Life.
Let’s bond over organ!
This year, on 13th August 2022- World Organ Donation Day, let’s pledge to donate organs and save lives. The event serves to raise awareness on the need for donating organs and to thank donors for their life-saving contributions.
Every single day, a patient suffering from end-stage organ failure passes away while waiting for an organ and many more are added to the waiting list. India is struggling with the shortage of donors and organs for transplantation, especially the situation is worse for heart transplants. Being unable to save someone's life despite having the ability is the saddest thing in life!
Now, the question is: Are you a suitable organ donor? Let's check!
Who is a suitable candidate for organ donation?
People of all ages are potential donors. When a person dies, their medical history and age are used to determine donor suitability. Here are some facts about organ donation:
- Anyone can donate their organs, irrespective of their age, religion, community, caste etc.
- Organ donation is decided by strict medical criteria.
- Tissues like the heart valves, cornea, bones, and skin can be donated after natural death, but essential organs like the liver, heart, lungs, kidneys, intestines, and pancreas can only be donated after brain death.
- Transplanting organs to recipients whose organs are damaged, enables many recipients to restart their normal lifestyle.
- To be a donor, anyone under the age of 18 must have the agreement of a parent or guardian.
- A serious condition, such as active cancer, HIV, diabetes, kidney disease, or cardiovascular disease, may restrict you from donating as a living donor.
Types of Organ Donation
There are two different types of organ donations, which includes:
- Living Organ Donation: A living organ donation is an organ transplant procedure in which a living individual donates one kidney, a portion of the liver, and a portion of the pancreas. This provides an option for people who are waiting for an organ from a deceased (dead) donor, while also increasing the number of organs available and saving more lives.
- Deceased Organ Donation: If living organ donation is not an option, a portion of the organ or the entire organ can be donated at the time of the donor's death. In the case of deceased organ donation, the donors are in the hospital, pronounced brain dead or on a ventilator. It is important to keep in mind that deceased organ donation is only possible after all attempts to save the patient have been tried and brain death has been declared, and there are specific processes for this.
All of us have the opportunity to come forward and pledge to donate our precious organs through organ donation. Increasing organ donation awareness can encourage more people toward organ donation.Every donor can be both a life saviour and a life changer. Be an organ donor and save lives!