Organ Donor

1734 Words7 Pages
“This is a gift anyone can give. It has no cost and it can be tremendously powerful” (Gunderson). In February of 2013, I lost a strong, independent woman whom I was very close with. Losing my grandmother was one of the hardest things I have had to face growing up. Although her death was heart breaking, she passed away as an organ donor and was able to save up to fifty lives. However, her death encouraged me to raise awareness for organ donation in the United States. As of 2013, there were only 14,257 organ donors in the United States (Donate Life America). Although this may seem like a lot, it is still not enough. There are 123,000 men, women, and children who are currently in need of a lifesaving organ transplant (Donate Life America). Due…show more content…
Many believe that if they agree to organ donation, doctors will forfeit their life or well-being to save others. Those who believe this do not know the whole process that is taken. When you go to the hospital to receive treatment, the doctors will focus on saving your life first, before they think about saving someone else’s life (Consumer Health). Being an organ donor does not affect treatment in the case of an accident or medical condition. The individual’s status as being a registered organ donor is only relevant after death has occurred (Brezina 17). Those who have agreed to donate their organs are given more tests to declare that they are truly dead than those who have not agreed to organ donation (Consumer Health). Most organs are recovered from patients who have been declared brain dead which means there is absolutely no brain function. There are many test performed to confirm that there is no brain function such as an apnea test which confirms that there is no spontaneous breathing (Brezina 37). If the heart completely stops beating, there will be no blood or oxygen flow circulating the body which will then make the organs begin to deteriorate. In order to be used for a transplant, the organ must be procured quickly after death or the organ will start to lose its function. Donors will be left on the ventilator if they were on one before they were pronounced brain dead or deceased. This will provide oxygen that will keep the heart beating and blood circulating causing the organs not to lose function. This type of donor is known as a “heart-beating donor” (Donation: Ethics and Worries). Once the surgery to procure the organs is performed, families are then given the opportunity to spend time with their loved one after the operation if they wish (Donation: Ethics and Worries). Donors worry about whether they will be able to have an
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