Donated body organs like hearts and kidneys contribute to the saving of hundreds of lives each year. The fact is that bequeathed tissues like skin, bone and heart valves could remarkably enhance the value of life for the persons receiving them. A patient who is dead following a cardiac arrest i.e. whose heartbeat has stopped permanently cannot be an organ donor but can be a tissue donor. Though in case of tissue donation the urgency of restoring a life by donation of liver or heart is absent, yet it is no way less critical to bring back vision by the help of a donated cornea, avert the severing of a leg using a bone donated by somebody or brighten the odds of survival of a patient having sustained burn injuries by skin donation.
Transplanted tissues offer advantages like it helps in alleviating trauma, assisting individuals to see again, resume their work life and also act as a live-saving gesture. Tissue donation, particularly in situations where there are impediments, could extend the chances of near and dear ones to carry out their beloved person's desires. In several families who have lost their kindred get solace from the fact that their adored one has contributed for others in this manner. Tissue transplantation is more prevalent compared to organ transplantation. Tissues can be conveniently conserved, ice-covered and kept for use later on since they need less blood supply compared to organs. 1
1. Norvilitis, J. M; Riley, T.M. Exploring the Motivations of Bone Marrow Typing Donors. Journal of Psychosocial Oncology, Volume: 19, 2001; p: 53.
Tissues like bone, corneas, skin, valves of the heart and veins could be preserved for months and in certain circumstances, for years. Several tissues, for example bone, could be donated throughout the life. However, majority of the tissues are bequeathed after demise, by those individuals having longed to, in their living years, to be helpful to others in this manner. In many cases they will be having an organ donor card and talked about their desires with their families. As preservation of tissues does not demand the sophisticated environment like organs need for survival, hence donation of tissues can be made even though the hearts and lungs have ceased to function.2
Grafting of bones could offer immense benefits, rebuilding physical condition and locomotion to a lot of patients. In several medical centers, patients to be operated upon for hip replacement were inquired if they are ready to give the bones that will be removed from their bodies in any case during the course of the surgery. These bones can be utilized for bone grafts helping those patients whose bones have been removed following some ailment, pain or due to any preceding surgery. A lot of similar donations are indispensable for building sufficient stock of bones for meeting any eventualities. In case of certain vision restoring surgeries, doctors depend upon a somewhat weird donated tissue i.e. The amniotic membrane in which a baby remains engulfed within the uterus. This type of tissue is taken, with their permission, from mothers going through deliberate caesarian sections.3
2. Norvilitis, J. M; Riley, T.M. Exploring the Motivations of Bone Marrow Typing Donors. Journal of Psychosocial Oncology, Volume: 19, 2001; p: 55.
3. Norvilitis; Riley, p: 57.
Close to 60 patients can benefit from just one membrane. Several types of tissues can qualify for donation after demise of persons. For implanting, bones are really essential which are utilized in surgeries with the objective of alleviating trauma and enhancing or enabling patients to walk again. Nearly, 10,000 bone transplants are made every year. Lives of patients as well as small children, tormented due to unhealthy or impaired valves, could be saved though transplanted heart valves. In the previous year, 800 heart valve transplants were performed annually. Badly charred patients could be brought back to life through donating skin.4
The graft of the skin assists in ameliorating trauma, and readies the tissue beneath it for subsequent aesthetic implants. It also assists in the lessening of blemishes in the case of these patients. A burn victim in a critical condition might require numerous skin donations. Severely injured knee joints sustained due to sporting activities can be cured and movement of patients normalized using tendons. Patients afflicted with acute eye disease or injury can receive cornea transplant. At times the eye's sclera is also required for transplant while performing reconstructive eye operation. In the previous year, nearly 2,500 transplants of the cornea were done. 5
4. Chabot-Long, Lynn. A Gift of Life: A Page from the Life of a Living Organ Donor, Je-Lynn Publications, 1996, p. 33
5. Chabot-Long, p. 33
Individuals prefer to be living donors, or do not prefer such donations, for diverse causes or for a combination of causes. Several families are afraid of tissue donations like skin, bone and corneas, as transplantation would deface the individual they adore and the last rites cannot be performed in an open coffin. To remove the lengthy bones of the hands and the feet, skin or corneas, admittedly, will make a person appear to look very awkward. People shall have to contemplate of their own and take a decision. No absolute correct reply is there to this issue regarding to donate or not. Also nobody can help you decide in your situations. You are the best judge given your specific situations. On the other side of the coin, a lot can be said that will assist in making certain that the choice you select is a prudent one.
A judgment or a dilemma entails moral issues while, for example, it concerns the matter of well-being of individuals; while there might be imperatives of harmonizing the wants and benefits of various people; and while matters of utmost significance of the manner of our living are at risk, and while somebody wishes to do the correct thing. In this wisdom, the issue of living donation is moral as it entails harmonizing the wants and benefits of various individuals, primarily the prospective recipient and the prospective donor, and since it involves vital matters regarding the welfare of the people associated. In a lot of cases the yearning to donate an organ might be founded on the inclination to bring back to life or better the health of a family member having prior attachments of warmth and adoration. This might also be a great matter. 6
6. LaTour, Stephen A; Manrai, Ajay K. Interactive Impact of Informational and Normative Influence on Donations. Journal of Marketing Research. Volume: 26; No: 3; August, 1989, p: 329.
In quite separate cases, an individual might desire to contribute a little to bring back to life or better the health of an anonymous individual in the society, founded on increased objective notion of assisting others or contributing to the society. For instance, this may be a gesture for those who willingly enter their names for prospective bone marrow donors or people eagerly donating blood. These donors might feel that the likely personal inconvenience or uneasiness of donating is far offset by the prospective advantages to the person awaiting the transplant. Several holy customs might favor living donations; however diverse customs might have their own viewpoint in the matter. For example, living donation might be regarded, as a chance to dedicate oneself to the cause of a fellow human being, may be an unknown person. 7 support the advocacy of tissue donation since it is based on the simple ground that it provides an opportunity to the family of a deceased one to recover other such families on the verge of such sufferings or health hazards. The magnanimity of the volunteers of tissue donations can be seen from the fact that it involves presentation of the life to the dying persons. Such presentations confer advantages to both the donor and the person receiving the donation along with the social environment in aggregate. Empirical studies reveal that about 5, 00,000 recipients in U.S. are being assisted every year with the bone and skin, cardio-vascular valves and veins. Similarly, the recipients numbering about 46,000 are able to see every year on receipt of the donated cornea. 8
7. LaTour, Stephen A; Manrai, Ajay K. Interactive Impact of Informational and Normative Influence on Donations. Journal of Marketing Research. Volume: 26; No: 3; August, 1989, p: 329.
8. Norvilitis, J. M; Riley, T.M. Exploring the Motivations of Bone Marrow Typing Donors. Journal of Psychosocial Oncology, Volume: 19, 2001; p: 56.
All these empirical evidences are in testimony to the fact of regular occurrence of tissue donations in the clinics worldwide. Donation of tissues by Chuck, husband of Marcy Spangler, following a cardiac failure at the early age of 45 years is visualized by his wife and children as significant contributions even after his death. It was revealed that the donated cornea of Chuck assisted two people to see, his bones were used to recover 30 patients, and his valves assisted in recovering a cardio-vascular patient. Presently, acute scarcity of the…