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What are my donation options?What do I do if I want to donate?

What Is the difference between the Traditinal and Laparascopic types of living organ donation?

What should I do if my family members are against organ donation?

Can someone Choose to donate an organ if they are younger than 18 years of age?

Can organs or tissues be donated while a person is still alive?

What organs and tissues can be donated to improve and prolong the lives of others?

Does live (living) organ donation leave the body deformed?

I am very active now, After I donate will I still able to lead an active lifestyle?

Can I or Is it permissible to sell my Kidney and or organs?

Is life different with one kidney?

What are the risks to kidney donors?

How long does kidney donation recovery take?

What is life expectency of living related kidney transplants?

Does my religion approve of organ donation?

Who pays for the transplant surgery and does the donor's family have to pay for the cost of donation?

I heard about someone whose kidney was stolen. Can that be true?

How many people are waiting for a kidney transplant?

Creatinine: What is it and why is it important?

What is the difference betweeen Laparascopic Donations and the traditional organ donation?

There are basically two types of surgery done for living organ donors. They are both equally effective. In both cases the kidney is removed successfully. The primary difference between the two surgeries is that Laparoscopic surgery is a less taxing on the living donor. The traditional surgry involves an 8 to 12 inch cut on the side of the body and sometimes required the parital removal of a rib. Where as the laparascopic donation uses 4 1 inch cuts on the front and side of the body. The recovery time is usually half of the traditaionl type of surgery. I personally had the laparascopic method of removal. However one of my good frinds had the traditaional method. We are both doing fine now and so are our recipients. He took about 3-5 week longer to recover than I did. But the end result is the same, we both saved a life :-).

Creatinine: What is it and why is it important?

Creatinine is a protein produced by muscle and released into the blood. The amount produced is relatively stable in a given person. The creatinine level in the serum is therefore determined by the rate it is being removed, which is roughly a measure of kidney function. If kidney function falls (say a kidney is removed to donate to a relative), the creatinine level will rise. Normal is about 1 for an average adult. Infants that have little muscle will have lower normal levels (0.2). Muscle bound weight lifters may have a higher normal creatinine. Serum creatinine only reflects renal function in a steady state. After removing a kidney, if the donor's blood is checked right away the serum creatinine will still be 1. In the next day the creatinine will rise to a new steady state (usually about 1.8). If both kidneys were removed (say for cancer) the creatinine would continue to rise daily until dialysis is begun. How fast it rises depends on creatinine production, which is again related to how much muscle one has. A baby may need dialysis when the creatinine reaches 2, whereas a normal adult may be able to hold off until 10, or higher.

Can I sell my Kidney?

Organ donation is all about the gift of GIVING, and in return you Get a new outlook. "if you are looking for a quick buck, try amway. will give that matters.crap for it anyway there. Besides, paid donation is illegal in the United States. To date, no reputable organization pays for human organs anywhere in the world. Although paid donation may occur in some parts of the world, the lack of accountability of the unscrupulous individuals that engage in this practice means that it is an unsafe to either donate a kidney through such an organization, or purchase a kidney in this way.

The National Organ Transplant Act (Public Law 98-507) prohibits the sale of human organs. Violators are subject to fines up to $50,000 and five years in federal prison. Congress is concerned that buying and selling organs might lead to unequal access to donor organs with the wealthy having an unfair advantage.

How many are waiting????

According to the United Network for Organ Sharing, there are over 61,000 people waiting for transplants in the United States alone. In Canada, there are about 2,500 people waiting (US data at UNOS site, Canadian data at CAT site). Worldwide, the numbers are much larger. In the United States alone, a new name is added to the transplant waiting list every 16 minutes. (source: UNOS)

Is life different with one kidney?

Yes, I am dating alot more often!!! Let me tell you something, as far as the donor is concered life is the same. Same diet, same exercise etc. You just need to be more carefull about yourself. dont overeat or overdrink. and be careful when it comes to contact sports (wear a protective over your remaining kidney) There are no repercussions of having only one functioning kidney on one's activites of daily living. In long term studies, there appears to be a slightly increased chance of developing high blood pressure. Life expectancy is unchanged by having only one kidney. A person with one kidney can bear children or father children, work, play sports, and enjoy life the same as someone with two kidneys.

What are the risks to kidney donors?

The primary risk during the surgery is any risk a surgery has, after the operation you need to realize you will have only 1 kidney so you need to take care of yourself and try not to get it injured. A human body only needs 48% of your 2kidneys to funciton. by givin away one, you will still function perfectly normal. just becasue you only have one does not put you more at risk for kidney disease or anything like that. The results with kidney transplantation from a living donor are excellent, and the risk to the donor is small. The short and long term risks are well documented. You will need to plan on 4 to 6 weeks off work, some pain and discomfort due to the incision, and you must spend time being carefully evaluated prior to being accepted as a potential donor. The mortality for the operation for the donor is estimated to be 0.06%, or one in 3,000 chance of dying from the surgery. This risk is far less than the general mortality of an appendectomy, a hernia repair, or a gall bladder operation. In the case of a successful transplant, the recipient generally has few restrictions on their life. Most transplant patients say they feel much healthier, energetic, and well than when they were on dialysis. Post strep glomerulonephritis is related to an infection, and is therefore not known to be hereditary to my knowledge. Part of the evaluation process of every potential living kidney donor is a careful investigation to exclude any potential donors that may have unsuspected underlying medical diseases that would make them at a higher risk to donate, and to exclude any familial kidney diseases.

How long does kidney donation recovery take?

Laparascopic 3-6 weks. Traditiaonl 5-8 weeks. till back to day to day regualr activities. How long does kidney donation recovery take? Total recovery time from major abdominal surgery is usually 4 to 6 weeks.

What is the life expectency of living related kidney transplants?

Answer: Each of us inherits half of our genes from our mother and half from our father. The genes responsible for immunological reactions to transplanted organs are close to each other on a single chromosome; so, for the most part, they are inherited as a single group, called a haplotype. If siblings recieve the same group of genes from each parent, they are a two-haplotype (full or complete) match. If they receive one group that is the same and one group that is different, they are a one-haplotype (half) match. If both groups of genes are different they are a zero haplotype match. In general, two-haplotyped matched living related donor kidney transplants have a 50% chance of achieving 24 years of function, one-haplotyped matched living related donor kidney transplants have a 50% chance of achieving 12 years of function, and cadaver donor kidney transplants have a 50% chance of achieving 9 years of function (Cecka and Terasaki, "The UNOS Scientific Renal Transplant Registry", Clinical Transplants 1993, Paul I Terasaki and JM Cecka, eds., UCLA Tissue Typing Registry, 1993:1-18). This does not mean, for example, that a two-haplotype matched living related transplant will function for 25 years and then fail, or that a cadaveric donor transplant will last 9 years and fail. Any individual transplant, if well cared for, may last much longer. Alan Leichtman, MD (University of Michigan)

Does my religion approve of organ donation?

An often-heard question when organ donation is being discussed is: "Does my religion approve?" Recently the New York Regional Transplant Program published the views of major religion on the subject. Here are those positions. What are the major religions' teachings on organ and tissue donation?

All major religions approve of organ and tissue donation as a charitable act of giving. Most express that it is an individual decision. If one has any questions concerning religious teachings on organ and tissue donation, consult with a spiritual leader.

AME & AME ZION (African Methodist Episcopal) Organ and tissue donation is viewed as an act of neighborly love and charity by these denominations. They encourage all members to support donation as a way of helping others.
Approved if there is a definite indication that the health of the recipient would improve, but reluctant if the outcome is questionable.
The Church has no official policy in regards to organ and tissue donation. The decision to donate is left up to the individual. Donation is highly supported by the denomination.
Donation is supported as an act of charity and the church leaves the decision to donate up to the individual.
The Church of the Brethren's Annual Conference in 1993 wrote a resolution on organ and tissue donation in support and encouragement of donation. They wrote that, "We have the opportunity to help others out of love for Christ, through the donation of organs and tissues."
Donation is a matter of individual conscience.
Transplants are acceptable to the Vatican and donation is encouraged as an act of charity.
The Christian Church does not prohibit organ and tissue donation. They feel that it is a personal decision to be made in conjunction with family and medical personnel.
No position, leaving it to the individual. EPISCOPAL The Episcopal Church passed a resolution in 1982 that recognizes the life-giving benefits of organ, blood, and tissue donation. All Christians are encouraged to become organ, blood, and tissue donors "as part of their ministry to others in the name of Christ, who gave His life that we may have life in its fullness."
No objection to procedures that contribute to restoration of health, but donation of the entire body for experimentation or research is not consistent with tradition.
Gypsies are a people of different ethnic groups without a formalized religion. They share common folk beliefs and tend to be opposed to organ and tissue donation. Their opposition is cormected with their beliefs about the aflerlife. Traditional belief contends that for one year after death, the soul retraces its steps. Thus, the body must remain intact because the soul maintains its physical shape.
Donation of organs is a individual decision.
Generally, Evangelicals have no opposition to organ and tissue donation. Each church is autonomous and leaves the decision to donate up to the individual.
The religion of Islam strongly believes in the principle of saving human lives. According to A. Sachedina in his Transplantation Proceedings' article, Islamic Views on Organ Transplantation, "the majority of the Muslim scholars belonging to various schools of Islamic law have invoked the principle of priority of saving human life and have permitted the organ transplant as a necessity to procure that noble end."
Moslems approve of donation provided the donors consent in writing in advance and the organs are not stored but are transplanted immediately. You can also read an article on donation posted at the Islamic Center of Southern California.
JEHOVAH'S WITNESSES Donation is a matter of individual conscience with provision that all organs and tissues be completely drained of blood.
Jews believe that if it is possible to donate an organ to save a life, it is obligatory to do so. Since restoring sight is considered life saving, this includes cornea organ transplantation. See also "The Ethics of Organ Donation," a talk by Rabbi Moses Tendler. See also "Ovadia Yosef Rules Kidney Donations Permissable, Even Obligatory". See also an article written by Kathie Kroot, a donor mom, entitled "A Jewish Perspective on Organ Transplantation."
In 1984, the Lutheran Church in America passed a resolution stating that donation contributes to the well-being of humanity and can be "an expression of sacrificial love for a neighbor in need." They call on "members to consider donating organs and to make any necessary family and legal arrangements, including the use of a signed donor card."
Mermonites have no formal position on donation, but are not opposed to it. They believe the decision to donate is up to the individual and/or their family. MORMON (CHURCH OF JESUS CHRIST OF LATTER-DAY SAINTS) The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints believes that the decision to donate is an individual one made in conjunction with farnily, medical personnel, and prayer. They do not oppose donation. PENTECOSTAL
Pentecostals believe that the decision to donate should be left up to the individual.
Presbyterians encourage and support donation. They respect a person's right to make decisions regarding their own body.
Encourage and endorse organ donation.
Donation of transplants is an individual decision.
Donation or transplants is an individual decision.
Donation and transplantation are strongly encouraged by Seventh-Day Adventists. They have many transplant hospitals, including Loma Linda in California. Loma Linda specializes in pediatric heart transplantation.
In Shinto, the dead body is considered to be impure and dangerous, and thus quite powerful. "In folk belief context, injuring a dead body is a serious crime. . .", according to E. Narnihira in his article, "Shinto Concept Concerning the Dead Hutnan Body. " "To this day it is difficult to obtain consent from bereaved families for organ donation or dissection for medical education or pathological anatomy . . . the Japanese regard them all in the sense of injuring a dead body." Families are concerned that they not injure the itai - the relationship between the dead person and the bereaved people.
Organ and tissue donation is believed to be an individual decision. The Society of Friends does not have an official position on donation.
Organ and tissue donation is widely supported by Unitarian Universalists. They view it as an act of love and selfless giving.
The United Church of Christ supports and encourages donation.
The United Methodist Church issued a policy statement in regards to organ and tissue donation. In it, they state that "The United Methodist Church recognizes the life-giving benefits of organ and tissue donation, and thereby encourages all Christians to become organ and tissue donors by signing and carrying cards or driver's licenses, attesting to their commitment of such organs upon their death, to those in need, as a part of their ministry to others in the name of Christ, who gave His life that we might have life in its fullness."
So while there are variations in specific views, it is clear that major religions of the world do in FACT PERMIT, ALLOW and SUPPORT transplantation and organ donation. I am passing this information to all on the subscribers of the net in hope that it will aid you in your discussions with friends on the importance of organ donations. Stan Simbal

Does the donor's family have to pay for the cost of donation? Does the donor's family have to pay for the cost of donation?

There is no charge to the family for donation of organs and tissues. Any costs related to the family's donation are paid for by the organ, tissue, and/or eye bank and passed on to the recipient. Hospital costs that have occurred prior to the declaration of death, as well as funeral costs, remain the responsibility of the donor's family.

Who pays for transplant surgery?

Private health insurance companies pay for most transplants. Medicare and Medicaid programs also pay for certain transplants for those who are eligible. Medicare coverage is provided for almost all kidney transplants through the End-Stage Renal Disease program. Medicare can also cover heart and liver transplant recipients if the recipient is Medicare eligible and the transplant is performed at a Medicare-approved center. Only a small percentage of heart and liver transplant recipients are Medicare eligible.
Medicaid coverage for organ transplants is determined by the individual's State Medicaid program. For those states providing such coverage, the Federal Government will provide funds on a matching basis. South Carolina provides such funding for all organ and corneal transplants

I heard about someone whose kidney was stolen. Can that be true?

Top 10 Myths About Donation & Transplantation
Myth #1
"I heard about this guy who went to a party, and woke up the next morning in a bathtub full of ice. His kidneys were stolen for sale on the black market!"
Reality: There is no documented case of this ever happening. Period. First, it is illegal to buy and sell organs in the United States. "Public Law 98-507 prohibits the sale of human organs. Second, due to the complexity of transplantation, piracy is practically impossible. The process of matching donors with recipients, the need for highly skilled medical professionals to perform the surgery, and the need for modern medical facilities and support necessary for transplantation make it highly unlikely that this system could be duplicated in secrecy. " References: HRSA, UNOS

Myth #2
"Rich and famous people get moved to the top of the waiting list, while 'regular' people have to wait a long time for a transplant."
Reality: The organ allocation and distribution system is blind to wealth or social status. "The length of time it takes to receive a transplant is governed by many factors, including blood type, length of time on the waiting list, severity of illness and other medical criteria. Factors such as race, gender, age, income or celebrity status are never considered when determining who receives an organ." Reference: UNOS
Myth #3
"If I'm in an accident and the hospital knows I want to be a donor, the doctors won't try to save my life!"
Reality: The medical team treating you is separate from the transplant team. The organ procurement organization (OPO) is not notified until all lifesaving efforts have failed and death has been determined. The OPO does not notify the transplant team until your family has consented to donation. See Q&A on Brain Death.

Myth #4
"My religion does not approve of donation."
Reality: All organized religions support donation, typically considering it a generous act that is the individual's choice. See "Religious Views on Donation."

Myth #5
"I don't want my family to have to pay if I want to donate my organs."
Reality: A donor's family is not charged for donation. If a family believes it has been billed incorrectly, the family should immediately contact its local organ procurement organization.

Myth #6
"If I donate, I would worry that the recipient and/or the recipient's family would discover my identity and cause more grief for my family."
Reality: Information about the donor is released by the OPO to the recipients only if the family that donated requests that it be provided. See "Contacting the Recipients/Contacting the Family."

Myth #7
"I have a history of medical illness. You would not want my organs or tissues."
Reality: At the time of death, the OPO will review medical and social histories to determine donor suitability on a case-by-case basis.

Myth #8
"I am not the right age for donation."
Reality: Age limits for organ donation no longer exist; however, the general age limit for tissue donation is 70. Organs may be donated from someone as young as a newborn.

Myth #9
"I heard that they take everything, even if I only want to donate my eyes."
Reality: You may specify which organs you want donated. Your wishes will be followed.

Myth #10
"Organ and tissue donation means my body will be mutilated and treated badly."
Reality: Donated organs are removed surgically, in a routine operation similar to gallbladder or appendix removal. Donation doesn't disfigure the body or change the way it looks in a casket. Normal funeral arrangements are possible.

What do I do if I want to donate? What should I do if I want to donate my organs and tissues?

Talk about it with your family. The single most important way to "register" as a donor is to "register" your wishes with your family so they will know your decision. Donor cards, driver's license stickers, and other means may also be used, but first be sure your next of kin knows your wishes! Discuss your decision with your family; make sure they know what you want, and find out what they want. You can use signing your driver's license or signing a donor card to raise the subject, or you may want to take the "First Family Pledge" (see How to Get a Donor Card If you want a Mickey Mantle donor card, call 1-800-477-MICK (i.e. 1-800-477-6425) to ask for one to be mailed to your home. You can also visit the Mickey Mantle Foundation's page at: Several versions of a downloadable, printable donor card are available at Dave Knaus' web page at You can also order a donor card at the New England Organ Bank web site: You can call the United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS) at 1-800-243-6667 (a.k.a. 1-800-24 DONOR) to order a donor card. You can visit the National Kidney Foundation's web page on donation, which has an image of a uniform organ donor card. Contact your region's organ procurement agency and ask for a donor card, or visit the federal government's organ donation web site. You can also check at your local Secretary of State's office, and ask for the sticker that goes on the back of your driver's license.

What if family members are against donation?
Individuals should explain their reasons for choosing to become an organ and tissue donor to their families. The family will have to verify and consent to an individual's wish to be a donor. Physicians, spiritual leaders, and attorneys should be advised of one's decision. They can bridge the gap between life and death and play a key role in the donation process with the family.
Can someone choose to donate if younger than 18 years of age?
Yes, with the permission of their parents or legal guardians. Parents or legal guardians can serve as witnesses to the signature on a donor card.
Can organs or tissues be donated while a person is still alive?
Yes. An individual may donate one kidney and live a normal life with the remaining healthy kidney. For example, in 1997, living donors provided kidneys for almost 30 percent of all kidney transplants. In certain cases a portion of a liver, lung, or pancreas may be donated to a close family member. Blood, bone, and bone marrow may also be donated. Donating a pint of blood can help save four individual lives.
What organs and tissues can be donated to improve and prolong the lives of others?
Kidneys, heart, liver, lungs, pancreas, intestine, and stomach are all organs that can be donated. Tissues that may be donated are blood, blood vessels, bone, bone marrow, cartilage, dura (tissue covering the brain and spinal cord), eyes (corneas and sclera), fascia, nerves, and skin. One donor can enhance the lives of 25 or more people. The entire body may be donated to medical science and research. This medical research is important to understanding diseases in humans so that lives may be saved and improved. Arrangements must be made prior to death. Contact the facility of choice (hospital, medical, dental, or nursing school).
Does live organ and tissue donation leave the body deformed?
First define deformed. I myself had a laparascopic surgery and a very good friend of mine from the gym had the standard surgery. In both cases neither of us are "deformed." In fact we probably have better bodies then most people walking down the street. Yes we both have scars, but lets face it, scars can be considered very sexy :O). And to be honest my scars have faded so much over the years that they are barely noticable. More to come...
I am a very active person now, If I donate a kidney will I still be able to lead an active lifestyle
Yes, you will be able to lead an active lifestyle after your kidney donation. I myself maintain a regiment of active exercise, but jogging, lifting, and even playing physical sports from time to time.