It’s challenging to consider what will happen to your body once you pass away, let alone donating your tissues and organs. However, being an organ donor, on the other hand, is a selfless and meaningful decision that could save a life.
This post answers all your reservations and questions about organ donation, whether you’ve never considered it or have put off becoming a donor due to perhaps misinformation.
Let’s begin by discussing
What is Organ Donation?
The surgical removal of a healthy organ from one person and transferring it into another person whose organ has failed or been injured is known as organ transplantation. Organ donation can save a person’s life while also providing them with a fresh view of life. Internal organs such as the kidneys, heart, liver, pancreas, intestines, lungs, bone marrow, and cornea are among the organs that can be donated.
Tissue donation, in addition to organ donation, can be a life-saving measure for those in need. Over 1.5 million tissue transplants are conducted each year. Face and hand transplantation involving vascularized composite allografts (VCAs) is now a reality. “Double” transplants, like kidney/pancreas or heart/lung, are even carried out.
Organ Donation Types
Organ donation can be divided into two categories-
- Live donations- Are made by live donors who donate organs like a kidney or a portion of the liver as it is possible to live with only one kidney. Even the liver is the only organ in the body that can regenerate, allowing for liver transplant while the contributor is alive.
- Cadaver donation – This is when the donor’s healthy organs are transplanted into a living individual after the donor has died. Although, a doctor needs to perform a medical evaluation to decide which organs can be donated.
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Organs from a single donor can save up to 75 lives.
Organ Donation in India
According to statistics, around 150,000 people in India seek and wait for a kidney transplant; yet, only 3000 of them can receive one. Ninety percent of those on the transplant waiting list do not receive an organ.
Live kidney donations have become more common in India fifteen years after the Transplantation of Human Organs Act was passed, allowing organ retrieval from brain-dead people. According to a recent study, India has the highest number of such transplants of any country on the planet, with the exception of the United States.
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Over 5 lakh individuals die each year in India while waiting for a transplant, despite having a name on the waiting list. India has one of the lowest donation rates globally, with 0.5 donors per 10 lakh.
World Organ Day
Every year, on August 13, World Organ Donation Day is commemorated to raise awareness about the necessity of organ donation and discuss and refute myths surrounding organ donation. This day aims to motivate individuals to donate their healthy organs after they die to save more lives. Organ donation, such as kidneys, heart, pancreas, eyes, and lungs, can help save the lives of those with serious diseases. This day aims to raise awareness about how donating one’s organs after death can be life-changing.
Nobel Prize for Organ Donation
In 1954, the United States performed the first successful living donor organ transplant. In 1990, Doctor Joseph Murray was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology and Medicine for completing a successful kidney transplant on twins Ronald and Richard Herrick.
Organ Donation Risks
Organs are matched based on various factors, including genetic profile and the size of the organ required. The duration, one has been on the waiting list, their health, and the proximity between the donor and the potential recipient are all factors that influence organ donation, which is a complex surgery with risks, including the possibility of organ rejection.
Exclusions from the Organ Donation List
You must disclose any health issues you have with your doctors at the start of the procedure. Then they’ll be able to tell if you’re a good fit. Certain diseases, such as HIV, diabetes, kidney disease, heart disease that is spreading, or having a serious infection, might make organ donation unfeasible.
In a study of 69 nations, India falls to 40th place in terms of the number of transplants per million population, with only three people in a million receiving a kidney transplant, mainly in the incidence of renal failure.
Waitlist for Organ Transplant
Organ transplant wait times vary depending on the organ, age, blood type, and other considerations. There is no waiting list for heart donations because just a few facilities in India perform heart transplants. Kidney transplant waiting lists are the longest in the country, followed by liver transplant waiting lists. In a kidney transplant, for example, waiting times can be as long as seven to ten years.
Volunteer to be an Organ Donor
Donating one’s organs is like giving someone new hope. Anyone, over 18 can sign up to be a donor regardless of age, caste, or religion, can volunteer to be an organ donor. It is, however, critical to ensure that patients donating organs do not have chronic illnesses such as HIV, cancer, or any heart or lung condition.
Thousands of children and adults receive organ transplants each year, giving them a new chance to live full and active lives. The demand for organs and tissue, on the other hand, far outweighs the supply. Gigadocs pays tribute to all organ donors and their families around the world who have made the selfless decision to donate their loved one’s organs.
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