Organ Donation in India
What You Can Donate to Save Lives? Organ donations can save hundreds of lives. Let us know which organs and tissues you can donate for life-saving organ and tissue transplant procedures. But before that, you must be aware of the basic criteria for organ donation. An organ or tissue donor should be:
- Registered organ donor
- Have family’s consent to donate
- In case of deceased (or brain dead) and non-registered donor family should willingly agree to donate the organs of their loved one
- Donor’s age above 18 years and preferably below 65 years of age
- If parents give consent, children can also be organ donors
- Healthy and fit medically, especially free from diseases of the donated organ
- Do not have diseases like Cancer, Hepatitis, or HIV
Organs that can be Transplanted
Heart – Donor heart can be transplanted from a brain dead or deceased person within six hours of a person’s death. The heart donor’s age should be less than 60 years of age and should not have any heart disease. Heart transplant candidates are those at end-stage heart failure due to coronary heart disease, birth defect, or damaged heart valves and muscles etc.
For More Read: Heart Transplant Surgery in India
Liver – Donor liver can be obtained from a living or a deceased person. The donor’s age should be between 18 to 55 years and should be free from any kind of liver disease or other serious medical condition. Liver is the organ that can regrow within few weeks and only a half of the liver of the living donor is used for transplant. In case of deceased donor, the liver has to be removed from the body within eight hours of the person’s death. Liver transplant is only advised when a liver failure cannot be fixed and the only choice is liver transplantation.
For More Read: Liver Transplant in India
Kidneys – Donor kidney can be obtained from living or deceased person. The donor’s age should be between18 to 55 years. He or she should be free from any kind of kidney ailment. A kidney transplant is recommended in case of end-stage renal disease.
Lungs – Lungs can be donated by a living or deceased donor, although living donor lung transplantation is rare and a complex procedure. The lung donor should be between 18 to 55 years of age. Lung transplants are required for those with severe last stage lung disease.
Pancreas – Donor pancreas usually comes from a deceased person. A living person can donate a partial pancreas. Pancreatic transplantation is done usually in Type I diabetic patients.
Intestines – Intestine can be donated by a living or deceased person. A living donor intestine transplant is preferred from someone in a family of age between 18 to 50 years. The intestine donation is a safe procedure. The living donor does not usually have any serious complication. For a deceased donor intestine transplant, there is no age limit for the donor’s age. He/she can be an infant, kid or an adult up to 50 years of age.
Tissues that can be donated
Along with organs you can also donate body tissues like blood, bone, cartilage etc., to treat the patients suffering from tissue related diseases. Tissue donation involves removal of the tissues from the deceased person’s body to transplant into the recipient patient. Below are the tissues that can be donated:
Cornea (eyes) – Donor eyes can be obtained from the deceased person within six hours of the death. There is no age limit for corneal transplant. The transplant is a blessing for those who are almost or completely blind. Cancer patients can also donate corneas.
Skin – Donor skin is needed to treat severe burns, wounds, and skin infections. The deceased person’s skin is harvested within twelve hours of his/her death. In India the deceased skin donor should be atleast 18 years of age. There is no upper age limit for donating skin. All those suffering from any skin disease, skin cancer, AIDS, hepatitis, and STD cannot donate skin tissue.
Heart valves – A human heart valve donation can treat those who need heart valve replacement. Donor heart valve is obtained from a deceased person who does not have any cardiac disease.
Tendons – Tendons are tissues that connect muscles to bones. Donor tendons can be obtained from deceased donor within 12 hours of his/her death.
India is facing a huge gap between demand and supply of organ and tissue transplants required. Let’s pledge to donate our organs and contribute to the cause.