Too many misconceptions about organ donation and organ transplantation prevent people from fighting for the lives of transplant recipients. Please read the list of common FAQs about transplantation and learn the truth behind this medical miracle.
Q: Is it true that if I am a registered organ donor, doctors won’t try to save my life in the event of an emergency?
A: Absolutely not. Saving your life is the number one priority of a medical staff. Organ and tissue donation is only considered when it’s absolutely certain that the person has died or death is inevitable, which is when the Organ Donor Registry will be checked.
Q: Is there an age limit to when I can be an organ or tissue donor?
A: No. Age is not a barrier when it comes to organ or tissue donation. In fact, people in their 80s have saved lives with their donations! Each potential donor is reviewed on an individual basis.
Q: I am not the healthiest person. Can I still be an organ or tissue donor?
A: You do not need to be in perfect health to be a donor. Whether you drink, smoke or are not conscious about your diet, you are still eligible to donate. Each potential donor is reviewed on an individual basis.
Q: If I donate an organ, will my body become disfigured?
A: Not at all. Organ donation is a very specialized surgery performed by skilled surgeons and will not disfigure your body.
Q: I am a religious person. Am I able to become an organ or tissue donor?
A: All major religions in the USA approve of organ and tissue donation and consider it an act of charity. If you have questions, please contact your religious advisor.
Q: Do I need to tell my family that I want to be an organ donor?
A: Yes! Your family plays a pivotal role in the organ donation process since they are asked to confirm this decision. Your family will be very involved in the donation process and be asked to provide your health information. It is also important to discuss your decision with your loved ones and prepare them so they are comfortable being a part of this process.
Q: My child is in need of an organ that I am able to donate (such as a kidney). How can I give one of my organs to my child?
A: Unfortunately, just because you are a relative of the recipient does not mean you are a compatible donor for the child. In fact, 25 percent of parents (and relatives in general) are eliminated as a possible donor because their blood group is incompatible. A doctor will need to run tests to see if you could be a qualified donor for the child.
Q: Once the recipient has received their new organ, how often do they need to be checked on by doctors?
A: The recipient will be under a doctor’s watch for the rest of their life. Immediately after the recipient has received their new organ, they will be visiting the hospital as much as twice a week. The longest interval of time between lab visits is one month, provided the recipient has shown healthy progress.