Original Research

The present status of organ transplantation

C. J. Mieny
Suid-Afrikaanse Tydskrif vir Natuurwetenskap en Tegnologie | Vol 7, No 4 | a923 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/satnt.v7i4.923 | © 1988 C. J. Mieny | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 17 March 1988 | Published: 17 March 1988

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C. J. Mieny,, South Africa

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Abstract

Organ transplantation has improved dramatically during the last decade. In spite of this a worldwide lack of donors still exists. There are sufficient numbers of potential donors available, but only 10% are utilised in practice. Investigations have shown that the main reason for this state of affairs is not reluctance of relatives to give permission for donation, but rather reluctance or even resistance from attending physicians to request permission. The reasons for this are complex and include such factors as ignorance, lack of commitment and reluctance to accept the greater workload that such involvement would demand. To combat this problem, a number of countries have passed legislation to compel doctors to ask permission for donation in every instance of brain death in suitable patients. The reasons for the greater success with organ transplantation are varied. Surgical techniques, especially in such technically difficult procedures as liver transplantation and heart-lung transplantations have shown considerable progress.

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