Organ Transplants Essay Research Paper Organ TransplantsBeing

Organ Transplants Essay, Research Paper Organ Transplants Being assigned the subject, organ transplants, I realized very quickly that this could cover a broad area. Does this mean animal to human transplants, (there’s no way I

Organ Transplants Essay, Research Paper

Organ Transplants

Being assigned the subject, organ transplants, I realized very quickly that this

could cover a broad area. Does this mean animal to human transplants, (there’s no way I

am going to get into the rights of animals on this one) artificial organ transplants, living

donor transplants or partial transplants, such as bone marrow and fetal brain cells, cloning

body parts to make them available for transplant or transplants from a cadaver. I decided

in order to write a productive paper I would need to focus on one or two areas I have

chosen human transplants as I know someone personally who has had to deal with this.

Science and technology have advanced a long way since the first transplant. Limb

transplants have become the newest frontier in medical transplants.

Transplants are not always used to just save lives but many times transplants are

done to make the quality of life better for the recipient . “About 25 human organs can

now be transplanted and the list is growing daily. The most commonly performed

transplantations are the kidney, cornea, and bone marrow transplants” (The Volume

Library 1034).

Kidneys for transplantation may be obtained from living donors or cadavers; other

organs can be obtained only from cadavers. Organs from cadavers must be obtained very

soon after death; they may, however, subsequently be preserved for some hours by cooling

and other procedures.

Liver transplantation is technically very difficult, and the transplant must begin to

function at once if the patient is to survive, since there is no satisfactory artificial liver. On

the other hand, rejection is more easily prevented in a kidney transplant .

I am sure you remember the series of Frankenstein movies that were once out. In

case you don’t know, Dr. Frankenstein collected body parts from several different

cadavers to make a super human. Many refer to organ transplantation as Dr.

Frankenstein Method of saving lives. Their point being that it is ghoulish to take a body

part from one person and put it in another. I feel that this is a unfair and uneducated

referral to a life saving technique that is giving hope to persons who were at one time in a

hopeless situation.

Such was the case with Kenny Lutz as he returned from working a 12-hour shift

one day. He became ill and drove himself to the hospital only to find out that he had

cardiomyopathy. There is no cure for the disease but doctors managed it for several years

with medication and a pacemaker. Also a AICD was installed in his chest. Even though he

seemed to defy all the odds , his health continued to deteriorate. It became apparent that

he would need a heart transplant. Doctors were telling his family it was just a matter of

hours and then the news came that a donor heart had been found. “A 32-year old man had

lost his life in a tragic car accident in Indianapolis, Indiana, and his family had donated his

organs. The heart was a perfect match and the transplant took place. His health improved

immediately” (The Journal Gazette).

Kenny and his wife Gale were here to visit last spring. He had a overnight case of

anti-rejection medication and other medicines he had to take but he seemed quiet well.

Before he left I had to ask if at any time he felt that other man’s emotions and etc. After

all he had the heart of another man in him. He stated he was different; however, he did

not feel that it was from the donor heart. He said no one could come that close to death

and not be a changed man. Kenny is still doing quiet well.

Heart transplantation resembles liver transplantation in that the patient’s life

depends on the transplant’s ability to function at once. It is a technically easier operation,

but rejection is difficult to recognize early and seems even more difficult to prevent.

Other human organs that have been transplanted with at least some success include

the pancreas and the lungs. Lungs have been grafted most successfully when combined

with the heart in a heart-and-lung transplant.

Corneal transplants from cadavers have been highly successful. Rejection rates are

low because the graft bed has no blood vessels but is nourished by diffusion from the

tissues. Since blood carries most of the rejection factors, corneal allografts survive


A big argument against transplants is religion; however, controversial to what

many may say, none of the major world religions oppose organ donation. Amish,

Buddhism, Catholicism, Christian Science, Greek Orthodox, Hinduism, Islam, Jehovah’s

Witness, Judaism, Protestantism, Mormon, and Quaker all permit, allow, and support

transplantation and organ donation.

Another argument against organ transplants is that the distribution of organs

available for transplant is done unfairly. Many claim that the wealthy and powerful receive

the organs first .

One organization, known as CORE, was founded in 1977 as the Transplant Organ

Procurement Foundation of Western Pennsylvania, and later known as the Pittsburgh

Transplant Foundation, CORE changed to its existing name in 1992 to reflect its

expanding role in the procurement field. CORE is one of 63 federally-designated entities in

the U.S. known as a non-profit organ procurement organization (OPO). Founded in

1977 as the Transplant Organ Procurement Foundation of Western Pennsylvania, and later

known as the Pittsburgh Transplant Foundation, CORE changed to its existing name in

1992 to reflect its expanding role in the procurement field.

Common arguments against organ donation are:

1. I do not want my body “cut-up.” Donated organs, tissues and eyes are

removed surgically, in an operation similar to gallbladder or appendix

removal. Normal funeral arrangements are possible.

2. My family would be expected to pay for donating my organs. A donor’s family is not

charged for donation. If a family believes it has been billed incorrectly, the family

immediately should contact its local organ procurement organization.

3. I cannot choose what I want donated. You may specify what you want to

donate. Your wishes will be followed.

4. If I am in an accident and the hospital knows that I want to be a donor, the doctors

and nurses will not try to save my life. Physicians and nurses will do everything

possible to try to save your life. In fact, the medical team treating you is separate

from the transplant team. CORE is responsible for contacting the transplant team, and

CORE is not notified regarding a potential donor until all lifesaving efforts have failed.

The transplant team is not notified by CORE until after consent for donation has been


5. I am not the right age for donation. Organs may be donated from someone as young as

newborn. There are no age limits for organ donation. The general age limit for tissue

donation is 60, and for eyes, 70.

6. If I do not sign a donor card, my family cannot donate organs. Even without a donor

card or donor designation on the license, families of suitable donors will be offered the

opportunity to donate.

7. People are taking kidneys from travelers and then selling them. A man was in a

swimming pool, and when he awakened, his liver was missing. USE COMMON

SENSE. No matter who insists these stories are true, they are not true! They are urban

myths that have circulated for years, most recently on the Internet. Think about it: If it

were that easy to get kidneys, 35,000 people would not be waiting for them. Secondly,

if someone’s liver were missing, he would not awaken to tell anyone, because he would

have bled to death.

8. Wealthy people are the only people who receive transplants. Anyone requiring a

transplant is eligible for one. In fact, most major insurance companies provide

coverage for heart, liver, kidney, and lung transplants.

9. “I have a history of medical illness. You would not want anything from me. Few

illnesses will eliminate someone’s ability to donate; however, at the time of death,

CORE will review medical and social histories to determine donor suitability on a case-

by-case basis” (

After researching and finishing this paper I have come to the conclusion that if I have to

take a stance, I would have to say I am for organ transplants. It is a really hard decision

but it does save lives, I must add that this is such a personal issue. I could list the pros and

cons of organ transplants for five or even ten more pages and it would not change what

one feels inside. This is a decision that has to be made within.

If you choose to donate, sign that drivers license. Always keep an open mind when

reading of an organ transplant . As morbid as it may sound, I would rather have my

organs taken from my body, after death, and passed on to keep someone else alive as to

have them buried . The next person needing a heart, liver, pancreas, etc. to live another

day, week, or month, may be your loved one.

Works Cited

Anonymous. “Organ Transplants.” (

Anonymous. “Organ Transplantations.” The Volume Library. The Southwestern

Company: 1992, 1034.

Lazzell, Terri Hughes. “Life begins anew.” The Journal Gazette. 25 August 1995, 1C.