Transplanting Human Organs

In 1998, bone marrow supplies for recipients, were so depleted that success was a very slim possibility. My son was an anonymous donor, but the young man he donated to did not live.

This story is about donating organs, including bone marrow.

In 2006, after a massive heart attack, my husband and I were informed that he was too old for a heart transplant. There were younger people who would benefit as recipients.

In December of 2008, my 18-year-old grandson was killed in a car crash. On his driver’s license he had placed a small pink dot, which meant: “I want to be a donor.” He was a strong, healthy boy, a great swimmer, and his organs were in perfect condition. Two kidneys, two lungs, heart, liver, eyes, tissue and bone marrow.

What a wondrous gift to all of the people who had no hope! The gift of life!

Early in 2010, one of my daughters was told it was time for her to have a kidney transplant after suffering with polycystic kidney disease her entire life. Each family member went for donor testing at the Stanford Hospital in Palo Alto, California, a hospital known worldwide for advanced treatment of complex disorders. I was too old, but another daughter was a match.

In February of 2010, one gave a kidney and the other received – an act of love and life.

In December of 2010, almost to the day that my grandson was killed two years previously, my 18-month-old great-grandson went into liver failure – at death’s door. As the doctors were preparing all of us for the worst, another family lost a loved one, donated organs and, our baby Luca became the recipient of a new liver.

Undoubtedly, my story is the same story many have to tell.

The point? Become a donor. Become a gift of life.

None of us know when we might need a transplant and none of us know when we might be donors.

1. Designate your decision on your driver’s license.
2. Sign a donor card and carry it with you.

Talk to your family so they may carry out your wishes.

* Did you know there are kidney exchange programs?

* Did you know that each day 179 people globally receive kidney transplants?

* Hundreds of thousands of transplant candidates are added, each month, to the worldwide waiting list, 110,000 in the United States alone.

One Response to “JL Exclusive — Transplanting Human Organs”

  1. Doug Underwood | 01.01.12 at 7:47 PM said…

    Nice article and a good trigger for those who have intended to sign up as a donor but haven’t done so. As for me, I signed as a donor many years ago and hope that someday I will be able to help save a life or two.