Organ and tissue donation have been increasingly adopted in hospitals over all parts of the world in the past decade. It has helped save many lives and this number is continuing to increase rapidly due to the recent advances in tissue or organ procurement, preservation, transportation, and surgical techniques.
A tissue is a group of cells. So, what is a tissue donation, and how it helps? This is an ambiguous question that arises in many minds. An example is, in burn patients, there often is a need for skin donation from the patient’s parents for skin grafting. Another instance is the transplant of the cornea from a cadaver to a needy patient.
Organ donation is a more complex form of tissue procurement. Timely attainment of the organ(s) forms a brain-dead person after proper consent is the key to this process. After a patient is declared brain dead, his close relatives are asked if the patient was willing to organ donation or not. As it is a sensitive issue, it has to be held with empathy. It is up to the patient’s attendants whether they would like to sign the consent or not; their decision should not be manipulated according to the law.
Organs required are obtained and after proper preservation, they are transported either to an organ Bank or an Operation Room directly, where another patient requires them. Blood cross-matching and tissue match are prerequisites. Patients are eligible for receiving an organ when there is an acute shutdown or functional failure of a specific organ due to any disease or injury.
Two types of organ donation
There are two types of organ donation, living donation, and deceased donation. In living donation, for example, kidney donation of a person to another, there are certain risks like infection, surgical errors, or even death, that may occur, and the patient must be aware of them all before consenting.
Which Organs/ Tissues Can Be Donated?
Organs that are donated for transplantation include the heart, liver, kidneys, pancreas, lungs, and small intestines. Tissues that can be donated include skin, cornea, heart valves, tendons, bones, and blood vessels.
Importance of Organ Donation
A single organ donor can save 8 lives and a tissue donor may save up to 50 lives.
Organ and Tissue Donation Form
Organ and tissue donation are attempted only by a few surgeons throughout the world. It has some prerequisites that have to be fulfilled like taking informed consent and filling out the organ donation form. It consists of:
- Identifying information:
Name, Age, Sex, Date of birth, Father’s name, mailing address, contact number, email address, blood group, height, eye color, allergies, and identification number (National identity card number, social security number, or driver’s license number)
- Specifications about which organs are to be donated (all or specified)
- Purpose of donation; whether organs are to be donated for transplant only, research, or both.
- Date and time of filling out the form
- Full name and signature of the consenter