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Showing posts from November, 2011

Vermont lye attack victim approved for face transplant

The Associated Press | San Francisco Examiner | Lisa Rathke

A woman who was burned and disfigured when her ex-husband doused her with industrial lye four years ago has been approved for a rare face transplant.

Carmen Tarleton, who was blinded in one eye and has limited vision in the other, said she hopes to be able to blink again. She wants to be able to breathe through both sides of her nose and eat normally. And she longs for the pain in her neck from the scarring to be relieved.

"I can't do those kind of everyday type of things that we all take for granted. I did, I definitely did," Tarleton, 43, said Tuesday.

Tarleton's transplant would be done at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston. The hospital has done three full transplants this year, including on Charla Nash, a Connecticut woman who was mauled by a chimpanzee gone berserk.

At least 18 face transplants have been performed around the world, said Dr. Maria Siemionow of the Cleveland Clinic.

Tarleton, who has …

Office of the Chief Medical Examiner of Maryland Implements FileTrail RFID to Track Bodies and Case Files

PR Business News

San Jose, CA (PRWEB) November 30, 2011

FileTrail, Inc. the leading provider of physical records management and RFID solutions has implemented their leading RFID tracking solution at the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner of Maryland. The powerful RFID technology is being used to track cadavers and case files, increasing efficiency and streamlining overall processes.

"FileTrail stood out among competitors because of the capabilities of their RFID tags. The tags allowed me to leverage RFID at a lower cost for each commissioning location. The RFID sensors set up throughout the entire facility have allowed us to automate file tracking," said Mike Eagle, Director of Information Technology at the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner of Maryland.

Automated case file tracking is made possible with RFID sensors placed above the drop-ceiling at designated locations throughout the 7-story building. The location of the case files are updated as they are moved among clerks…

Rancho Bernardo resident beats odds on, off golf course

Pomerado News | Michael Bower

Brandon Gandy overcame the odds when he buried a 75-yard chip shot for eagle to propel his foursome to the National Kidney Foundation Cadillac Golf tournament title on Nov. 7.
But the 25-year-old resident of Rancho Bernardo has overcome far longer shots than that one to get to where he is today.

Gandy, born with several birth defects, had 16 major surgeries before he turned the age of 3. His running count of serious operations stands at 24, but perhaps the most intriguing of them all is one that involved his mother, Linda Gandy.

When Brandon, a 2004 graduate of Rancho Bernardo High, turned 16, he was starting to have difficulties with kidney failure. The one kidney he was born with was wearing down and affecting his concentration. He struggled to focus on school work and on the golf course, where he played three years on the varsity team for the Broncos. He would need a transplant.
Read more:…

The Donation of Life

Community Magazine | Debbie Cohen

He has been defying the odds and stumping doctors for years. But on Thursday, November 3, 2011, 37-year-old Ronen Bokovza, entered a new era in his life. On that mild autumn day, in the company of his spiritual mentor, Rabbi David Ozeri, Ronen prepared to spend to six hours attached to medical equipment at Columbia Presbyterian Hospital. For virtually anyone else, this would have been a grueling ordeal. But for Ronen, this experience was practically standard fare – and in fact a miracle for which he was excited and exceedingly thankful.

For the past 17 years, Ronen suffered from a chronic kidney disorder and spent 12 hours out of every day attached to a dialysis machine in his house. During last month’s six hour procedure at Columbia, he received a kidney transplant—and with it, a chance to live a normal and healthy life.

But the account of Ronen’s journey to that moment is itself a remarkable story. From the untiring support of Renewal, the organizatio…

Rutland Regional Medical Center to Participate in Donate Life Vermont Registry Rally

Donate Life Vermont
To kick off the season of giving, Rutland Regional Medical Center is taking part in Donate Life Vermont’s organ donor awareness campaign “Register Rally”.  The Register Rally is a friendly competition between participating Vermont hospitals to increase the number of official state organ and tissue donor registrants in the state of Vermont. Currently, less than one percent of the Vermont population is officially registered on the state’s organ and tissue donor registry. The goal of the rally is to register 5,000 Vermonters as organ and tissue donors in a month starting November 21 and running through December 21.

“Rutland Regional supports giving the gift of life and will be working closely with Donate Life Vermont to help spread the important message of becoming an organ and tissue donor in Vermont” states Melissa West, Community and Provider Relations,Rutland Regional Medical Center.
Read more:

Congreso por la Procuración y Donación de Órganos

Diario Buenos Aires

Congreso Internacional de Donación de Órganos Congreso de la Sociedad Internacional de la Procuración y Donación de Órganos (ISODP) y el 2º Congreso de la Sociedad Iberoamericana de Coordinadores.

El viceministro de Salud de la Nación, Eduardo Bustos Villar, aseguró que "impulsar la donación y el trasplante de órganos es reafirmar la ayuda al prójimo y la solidaridad" al dejar inaugurado el 27 de noviembre el 11º Congreso de la Sociedad Internacional de la Procuración y Donación de Órganos (ISODP) y el 2º Congreso de la Sociedad Iberoamericana de Coordinadores de Trasplante (SICT), que se desarrollarán en Buenos Aires hasta el próximo miércoles.
Participan del congreso más de 1000 profesionales de 60 países.

"Es un orgullo que las prestigiosas instituciones co-organizadoras de estos encuentros nos hayan escogido como sede, lo que representa un concreto reconocimiento a los avances producidos en la materia por nuestro país a partir del año 2003", in…

Doctor leads skilled team at Transplant Institute in Memphis

WMC TV, Action News 5 Memphis | Joe Birch

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - Memphis can now boast of being home to one of the top organ transplant centers in the world. Apple co-founder Steve Jobs' top secret transplant at Methodist University Hospital in 2009 helped bring this lifesaving Memphis expertise into worldwide focus.

But day in and day out, ordinary people living in the Mid-South are gaining a new lease on life at the Transplant Institute at Methodist University Hospital.

Mike Hearington had a liver transplant October 17th.

"My care was exceptional," he said. "All your folks, everybody on the staff, did an exceptional job."

The Memphian walked out of Methodist University Hospital's Transplant Institute six days later. That's not uncommon, according to Dr. James Eason, who leads a team of health professionals at the hospital that's intensely focused on caring for transplant patients.Read more:…

Hawaii patients counting on transplant clinic to stay open

KGMB - KHNL | Tim Sakahara

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The Hawaii Medical Center bankruptcy has much more than a financial impact. The East clinic in Liliha has the state's only transplant center and losing it would change people's lives.

An organ transplant is certainly not an outpatient procedure. It requires weeks of care before and after the operation and people that have had it say it's priceless having it here in Hawaii.

Wesley Nanamori and Patricia Mau-Shimizu don't know each other, but do know what it means to be given a new life. Both are organ recipients who credit the Hawaii Medical Center Transplant Clinic for saving their lives.

"I think I would have died within a year so 2001 would have been my last year on Earth," said Nanamori, who had an enlarged heart. He received the transplant ten years ago.

Nanamori says if the transplant clinic wasn't in Hawaii he would have had to move to the mainland because once you get the call a donor is found you …

Church marks National Donor Sabbath Month

Staten Island Live | Mark D. Stein

OTTENVILLE -- At Our Lady Help of Christians R.C. Church two Sundays ago, Deacon Richard Salhany called for Danny Carsten to stand.

The 16-year-old rose from his chair and was met with a lengthy round of applause from the standing-room-only crowd at the Tottenville church.

On Feb. 18, 2009, Carsten’s mother Denise received a most-anticipated call: A heart was available for her son. Throughout his life, Danny had battled a deadly condition called hypoplastic left heart syndrome.

Two days later, he received a new heart from a person who died in a vehicle accident. More than two years have passed, and today, Danny is perfectly healthy.

“It was surreal,” said Ms. Carsten, recalling the day the phone call came.

The transplant took six hours, and afterward, when Danny’s family saw him, they noticed he appeared pink, no longer borderline blue, like in the past. Read more:…

Transplant coordinator Jean Bowe is pure gold

Barnes Jewish Hospital

One of the most important relationships a transplant patient forms – at Barnes-Jewish Hospital, at least – is with their transplant nurse coordinator. 
The transplant coordinator not only acts as a liaison between the patient and the medical team caring for them, but also educates the patient and their family about transplant, guides the patient through pre-transplant evaluation and post-transplant testing, but often arranges the logistics of the transplant itself. It’s a hard job.

But Barnes-Jewish is lucky to have transplant coordinators who do that hard job very well, and often for a long time.
Read more:

Honoring special givers

The Marietta Times | Sam Shaver

Organ donation stories focus on human spirit.

Families of organ donors got a chance to honor loved ones and share some of their stories during a "Hope for the Holidays" gathering at Marietta Memorial Hospital's Strecker Cancer Center Tuesday night. The event is an outreach program of Lifeline of Ohio that promotes tissue and organ donation.

Diane Carpenter, 52, of Summerfield said she's extremely proud of her firefighter husband, Mickey, who died suddenly of a stroke in July of this year. He was 54.

"He's still out there, though," she said. "He's living on in the lives of others whose lives he saved as an organ donor.
Read more:

Bath student Abby takes organ donor campaign to heart of government, UK

This is Bath

A Bath student who almost lost her sister is meeting with ministers today to discuss ways to boost number of people on the organ donor register.

Abby Thackray, 21, of Lower Bristol Road, was 16 when her older sister Emily needed a double lung transplant.

Now along with her friend Hope Milne, 15, whose younger brother had a bowel transplant after intestinal failure, she is meeting with Shadow Health Minister Anne Milton and the minister with responsibility for Political and Constitutional Reform Mark Harper.

They will be discussing the possibility of adding a box on electoral forms to allow people to tick to sign up to the organ donor register. Read more:

Kuwait Wins International Organ Donation Prize in Argentina

Kuwait News Agency (KUNA)

KUWAIT, Nov 30 (KUNA) -- Kuwait won an award for best research at the 2011 Organ Donation Congress, currently held in Argentina.
The paper submitted by organ transplant consultant at the Liver and Pancreas Surgical Unit in the Amiri Hospital Dr. Hani Haider was chosen by the judging committee of the International Society for Organ Donation and Procurement (ISODP). The paper competed against hundreds of entries from around the world.
Dr. Haider told KUNA, Wednesday, there were several scientific papers by Kuwaitis, which were well received by their peers.
He added that Dr. Mustafa Al-Musawi, Head of Hamad Al-Essa Organ Transplantation Center, also gave many lectures on organ donation and transplantation as well as on Kuwait's pioneering role in this field during the congress. The researcher praised the sponsorship and support of the Ministry of Health to Kuwaitis attending.
Dr. Haider, who is also the Secretary of the Board of Directors of Kuwait Society for O…

Increasing organ donation a health care priority

Nova News Now | Carole Morris-Underhill

Bob Rae tours Nova Scotia, visits Kings Hants ridingFederal interim Liberal leader Bob Rae made a quick pit stop in Windsor Nov. 22 to grab a coffee while en route to wine country.
Alongside Kings Hants MP Scott Brison, Rae had the opportunity to meet the people who are most affected by government policies and hear what issues are on their minds.

Rae, who was elected the interim leader after the Liberals were walloped at the polls earlier this year, said the stop at the Tim Hortons on Wentworth Road was the best way to connect with the electorate. Read more:

Making a Difference: Celebrating our Community Partners

The Living Legacy Foundation | Lauren Muskauski

On November 10, 2011, The Living Legacy Foundation honored many of the hospital and community partners, whose hard work and commitment to raising awareness for organ, eye and tissue donation helps saves the lives of hundreds of Marylanders waiting for a life-saving transplant every year.

The celebration of these year-long accomplishments took place on November 10 at the Baltimore Hilton. Nearly 200 nurses, doctors, hospital administrators and community members were in attendance. Listed below are all the evening’s award winners. Read more:

2 get a gift of life, thanks to one man who donated his organs, India

Bangalor Daily News & Analysis

There is now a common thread between 59-year-old Krishna Bose, a railway employee, and 45-year-old A Vimala Hasan, a scientist working with National Aerospace Limited.

Bose was suffering from liver failure and Hasan from kidney failure. They received organs in a city hospital recently from the same cadaver donor.

While both are unaware of who the donor was, they are thankful to the donor for gifting them a second innings of life.

Bose displayed the first symptom of liver failure on a trip to Haridwar. A resident of Kolkata, on her way home back, doctors from the Railways Hospital confirmed she had second stage liver failure. "We came to our daughter's house and consulted doctors from Manipal Hospital. At the same time, I enrolled with the zonal co-ordination committee in Karnataka for transplants (ZCCK)," said Bose. Read more:

Organ donation: Giving the Gift of Life this Christmas

KTIV NBC4, Siouxland's News Channel | Mark Victoria

For many, the holiday season is a time of anticipation, a time of giving, and receiving.

But for folks in need of an organ donation, the anticipation lasts all year long and could mean the difference between life and death.

In the lobby of Mercy Medical stands a Christmas Tree.

But this tree symbolizes more than the upcoming holiday, it also stands for the donors who gave their organs, tissues, and eyes to those in need.

Titled "The Giving Tree" this is the first year the tree has been set up, and organizers hope it calls attention to the cause.

"To create awareness in other people so that they do talk about donation in their families. It's very difficult sometimes to talk about death, but it is something that none of us will escape and it is such a vital gift that we can give to someone," said Mary Ann O'Dell, Donation Specialist with the Iowa Donor Network.
Read more:…

Tragic Stockport youngster, 5, gives precious gift of life to four people after his death

Manchester Evening News, UK | Peter Devine
A little boy who died suddenly has given the gift of life to four people.

Luca Giovannini, aged five, passed away just 24 hours after complaining he felt sick.

His parents Vickie and Renzo then made the decision to donate some of their son's organs for transplant.

They were given to a two-year-old girl, a two-year-old boy, a 35-year-old mother-of-two and a 34-year-old man.

Renzo, of Wilcott Road, Gatley, Stockport, said: "When the medics were trying to save Luca’s life, I asked a doctor what his chances were of surviving, and he said we were looking at the worst-case scenario.

"It's a scenario which no parent wants to be faced with, but it was at that stage that we discussed organ donation. Read more:

Road victims organs will help to save others

Bermuda Sun News | Raymond Hainey

A tragic road accident victim has given others the gift of life after his relatives donated his organs for transplant, the family revealed on Tuesday.

A spokeswoman for the family of Alex Monk, who died last Friday after his bike was in collision with a bus on Thursday morning, said: “Alex touched many lives during his 41 years of life.

“We are comforted knowing that he continues to help others, even now.”

Mr Monk, a gifted cartoonist and artist who had only been married to wife Maria for ten months, suffered serious head injuries in the crash, which happened on Middle Road, Southampton, around 7.20am last Thursday.

Staff at the King Edward VII Memorial Hospital’s intensive care unit battled to save him but he never regained consciousness and was pronounced brain dead on Friday morning.

Wife Maria and father Larry made the decision to donate his organs to others and a specialist team from Boston was flown in on Friday evening.
Read more: http://bermudasun.…

Sunderland model's plea for organs

Sunderland Echo
GLAMOUR model Danni May is appealing for Wearsiders to sign the organ donor register after the death of her cousin meant others could be saved.

Former Monkwearmouth School pupil and Sunderland graduate Louise Smith was just 34 when she died from an aneurism.

Her death came just days after giving birth to a little girl, Ava Grace Louise Smith Sayers, in October.

Although still devastated by her untimely death, Louise’s family, including her partner, John Henry Sayers, have found some comfort in the fact that seven of her organs could be donated to save lives.

Mum-of-one Danni, who lives in Barnes, said: “Louise filled out a donor card a couple of years ago and encouraged me to do the same. Read more:

German Alex O'Loughlin Fan Club Christmas Present for Taylor's Gift

Alex O'Loughlin Fans for Donate Life
The founder and core members of the German Alex O'Loughlin Fan Club have sent an early Christmas present to Taylor's Gift and their spokesperson Alex O'Loughlin: They have given $330 in support of the wonderful charity that made raising awareness for organ donation their mission.

Silke aka Schmeissi, Babette, Anne, Tinker, Petralisa, Hexe, Alexfan, Tanja and Sabine wish Taylor's Gift and Alex O'Loughlin a Merry Christmas!

The fan club also translated Taylor Storch's story, and provides other members and visitors on their website with translated instructions on how to donate funds to Taylor's Gift: To read Thank You note from Taylor's Gift:

Presumed consent not answer to solving organ shortage in US, researchers say

Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions

Removing organs for transplant unless person explicitly opts out of donation before death not best way to address scarcity, raises sticky ethical questions

Changing the organ donation process in this country from opt-in -- by, say, checking a box on a driver's license application -- to opt-out, which presumes someone's willingness to donate after death unless they explicitly object while alive, would not be likely to increase the donation rate in the United States, new Johns Hopkins research suggests.

Some organ donation advocates have pushed for a switch to an opt-out system, arguing it would be a positive step toward addressing the nation's profound organ shortage. They say most people support donation but never formally record their wishes and that an opt-out system -- known commonly as presumed consent -- might ease the burden of decision-making on grieving families at the time of death. Many thousands of people die every year waiting f…

Siblings give each other the best possible gift this year

North Brunswick Sentinel | Jennifer Amato

The greatest gift you can give in life is the gift of life.

The gift has a little more meaning when it’s from sibling to sibling.

Kristyn Testa, 31, of North Brunswick, donated a kidney to her older brother, Michael, 33, of Riverton, in October.

Michael had chemotherapy when he was 5 years old. He was on a concoction of 10 medications in the early 1980s for about a year, medications he said that are no longer prescribed because of the ramifications they had on patients. He said this ultimately led to his kidney failure.

At the age of 18 he was diagnosed with nephritic syndrome. He had two major flare-ups that caused edema, but the problem was alleviated with medication. Yet after he passed out in a store in October 2009, doctors realized he had acute kidney failure. Read more:

On Organ Donation

iCons in Medicine

As of October 2011, a reported 112,178 patients in the U.S. were awaiting organ donations and every 11 minutes another individual is added to the waiting list. Though an average of 75 people per day receive organ transplants daily and more than 86 million people in the U.S. are registered as donors, a critical shortage of organs remains. Increasing information about the importance of donation could help to encourage new donors and save lives.

Organs and tissues including heart, kidneys, liver, lungs, skin, and corneas can all be donated and transplanted. According to experts, the organs and tissue from a single donor could help as many as 50 recipients. There are no age restrictions for donors, and depending on the type of donation, organs may come from a deceased or living donor. Current data indicates that as of October 7, 2011 there had been 113,693 living donors and 143,662 deceased donors since the tracking of organ donation was initiated.

Any individual is eligib…

A most meaningful gift for the season: A dedicated rose on the Donate Life Float

This year’s Donate Life Dedication Garden continues to blossom! To date 351 individual dedications from 38 states and one country are posted on the float website.When making your dedication you also have the option of sending the card and digital certificate as a gift. Your $30 charitable contribution honors your loved ones and supports Donate Life’s participation in the Rose Parade. Dedicate your rose today:
Some of the poignant dedications posted over the past two weeks:
·In memory of Andy Endo: Our sweet little boy, our miracle who gave us such joy in your short life. We will always see you in every rainbow.  (CA)·In support of Doris Streicher: Mom, we support you in your continued hope for a kidney transplant. You're the strongest person we know & we love you. Much Love & Aloha, Chris, Stephanie & Connie  (CA)·In memory of Scott Adams: A heart of gold!!! You were always helping others and did not…

Today on 'The Doctors TV Show'

Heart Transplant
Heart failure occurs when the pumping action of the heart becomes less powerful, which slows blood circulation throughout the body, and can result in blood back-up in the lungs and legs. It may develop gradually over several years, or quickly after a heart attack or cardiovascular disease.
“You can get severely swollen legs or fluid in your lungs,” E.R. physician Dr. Travis Stork says. “Breathing becomes difficult. You can’t lie down at night. Walking a few feet is almost impossible.”

Every year, thousands of people suffer heart damage and are put on transplant waiting lists. In 2003, Andrea, now 41, began suffering from fatigue, loss of appetite and swollen legs, and was diagnosed with a virus. Three years later, her symptoms returned, she had trouble breathing and experienced an abnormally rapid heart rate. Doctors diagnosed her with an enlarged heart and said she needed a pacemaker. “I was shocked,” she says. “I’m healthy. I’m good. I’ve never been si…

73 year-old grandfather passes 20-year anniversary since receiving heart transplant

Great Falls Tribune | Erin Madison

Al Strickland celebrated a remarkable anniversary recently.

In 1991, he received a heart transplant. October marked 20 years that Strickland's new heart has been beating inside his chest and pumping blood throughout his body, keeping the now 73-year-old alive and healthy.

Strickland received his heart transplant after suffering two heart attacks, one in 1982 and another in 1984. At the time, a donor heart was Strickland's only option for survival. Only an eighth of his heart was functioning, he explained.

"They were not doing the mechanical hearts at that time," said Sue Strickland, Al's wife. Read More:

Canada's Living Donor Paired Exchange Kidney Registry Hits the Century Mark

Digital Journal

National organ donation registry celebrates 100th successful transplant

OTTAWA, Nov. 29, 2011 /CNW/ - Canada's ground-breaking Living Donor Paired Exchange (LDPE) kidney transplant registry has reached another significant milestone with the completion of its 100th successful transplant. The landmark transplant comes less than a year after the last province signed on to make the LDPE Canada's first truly national organ donation registry.

The LDPE - which operates as a partnership between Canadian Blood Services and transplant programs across the country - facilitates living kidney donations between patients with a willing but incompatible donor and other pairs in the same situation. Since launching as a three-province pilot in 2009, the LDPE has been a shining example of what can happen when programs work together, across provincial boundaries for the benefit of patients.

Read more:

Death-row organ donor wants to save more people

Focus Taiwan

Taipei, Nov. 28 (CNA) A death-row inmate, who had one of his kidneys removed Monday to give to his ailing sister, said in a letter he wrote before the operation that he wished to use his remaining organs to save more people.

The inmate, named Cheng Chin-wen, wrote that he would offer whatever virtue came from the organ donation to the people he murdered.

The 100-plus Chinese-character letter was made public by Taipei City Councilor Angela Ying after the operation at the New Taipei-based Far Eastern Memorial Hospital. Read more:

Indian Organ Donation Day marked at AIIMS, India

Times of India

NEW DELHI: Eleven years have elapsed since she received a heart from a 14-year-old boy, but the memory still brings tears to Priti Unhale's eyes. The charitable act made the difference between life and death, and she thanks the anonymous soul every day.

In November 2000, Unhale's condition was diagnosed as dilated cardiomyopathy (a heart condition). She was beset with fear, as a donor was hard to come by. "The doctors told me I had just had six months to find a donor. Every day seemed like a struggle as my family went from one hospital to another. Back then, the systems were not streamlined and I was rather lucky to find a donor," said Unhale.

Though things are not the same, the organ donation has vastly improved her quality of life. "Although I'll have to take medicines all my life, my condition is much better now," she added. Unhale is now a counsellor and helps All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in promoting organ donations.…

Organ donation campaigners back 'opt-in' for new voters

London Evening Standard | Sophie Goodchild

Two friends whose brother and sister were saved by transplants are calling on David Cameron to overhaul organ donation.

Hope Milne, 15, of Croydon, and Abby Thackray, 21, from Epsom, want people to have the option of signing up when they register to vote.

The pair will present their campaign to health minister Anne Milton and Mark Harper, minister for political and constitutional reform, tomorrow. The electoral registration system is being reformed and they want the organ donor question added to the new form.

People can already "opt in" to the NHS Organ Donor Register when they apply for a driving licence or register for a Boots Advantage card. Read more:

Mashadi Rabbi: Organ Donation Cards

Mashadi Rabbi - Daily Insights in Halakha and Jewish History

In the previous weeks (see here), I explained the opinions of the Rabbis regarding living organ donation, and the differences on opinion over the determination of the moment of death, which affects the Rabbis' ruling on cadaveric organ donation.

In our days, the willingness to donate one's organs is stated in the driver license or in a card that one carries in his or her wallet. The practical question we will address today is, what is the best way to declare that one wishes to donate his or her organs.

In my opinion, the best recommendation (and what I have personally done) for a Jewish person who wishes to donate his organs, is to register in the Halachic Organ Donor Society, and to carry their card in his wallet.

The advantages of this card, compared to the general statement written in the driver license, is that the HODS card specifies the following points:

1. Organs should be removed only if they are to be transpla…

Could you give their heart away? - Australia


A international leader in successful organ transplants, Australia still has one of the lowest donation rates in the world. Lucy Cormack asks why.
It’s a frightening thought, to be asked to give away the vital organs of our loved ones.

But for registered nurse and PhD student, Holly Northam, it’s even more frightening that less than 60 per cent of Australian families ever say yes.

A recognised leader in successful transplants, Australia has one of the lowest organ and tissue donation rates in the developed world.

In her ten years of medical experience, Northam has seen a stark conflict between the approach taken by hospitals requesting donations and the reactions of potential donor families.

It’s the “agony of the human aspect of organ donation”, said Northam, which prevents shocked and grief-stricken families from being able to handle such an emotional and confronting decision. Read more:

Father, Sister of Two Victims Discuss Pleasant Garden Shootings

WGHP | Myfox8

GUILFORD COUNTY, N.C. (WGHP)— The father and sister of two Pleasant Garden shooting victims spoke publicly Monday for the first time about the incidents.
FOX8 reporter Cindy Farmer spoke with Rocky Smith, Mary Ann Holder's ex-husband, and Christina Smith, the couple's oldest daughter. Zack and Dylan Smith were two of five children who died after the shootings on the morning of Nov. 20.

Deputies believe Holder shot six people in all before shooting and killing herself. Christina said she no indication that anything was wrong.

"I believe that everything has happened for a reason that led up to this moment. I will never know those reasons. I don't think I need to know those reasons," said Christina, who stayed close to Holder even after her parents divorced.

Rocky also said he had no indication that anything was wrong, saying Holder had even bought a carload full of groceries the day before the shootings. Beyond that, though, neither would speculate on why…

"Gifts of love" from Utah families make up 2011 Festival of Trees

ABC 4 Salt Lake City | Emily Clark

SANDY, Utah (ABC 4 News) – The end of Thanksgiving marks the yearly tradition of Festival of Trees. Volunteers spent Monday transforming the South Towne Expo Center into a “Gift of Love” for the Primary Children’s Medical Center.

While each of the hundreds of trees, wreaths and holiday displays are beautiful each possess their own story. It’s a very touching and special story for the Frazier family.

Corrine Frazier spoke to ABC4 while she was decorating her tree on Monday; she said, “I have to be strong because she was strong for me and to keep her memory alive, we try to help other people.”

Frazier is helping PCMC and remembering her angel, Livi. In June of 2010 Corrine was eight months pregnant and driving home from work when she was hit head on. Emergency crews were able to save Corrine, but her unborn child did not live. Doctors later told Corrine, her Livi protected her organs and saved her life. Read more:…

Doctors complete 1st live death-row organ donation

The China Post
The first-ever organ removal operation on a live death-row inmate has been conducted successfully after the inmate in question donated his kidney to his sister with an operation conducted in New Taipei City yesterday, the Far Eastern Memorial Hospital announced yesterday.

Doctors removed one kidney from the condemned criminal, Cheng Chin-wen (鄭金文), at around 11 a.m. yesterday morning before transplant surgery on Cheng's elder sister was completed in the afternoon, said Chu Shu-hsun (朱樹勳), superintendent of the hospital.

The transplant was performed with the latest microinvasive technology and the donor only has to be hospitalized for a week, he said.

The recovering period for Cheng's sister, who previously suffered from a life-threatening condition and receives kidney dialysis two or three times a week, will take approximately two weeks, Chu added.

Since the donor in question is a death-row inmate, Chu said the whole kidney removal surgery was conducted under the ti…

Chicago Boxer’s Legend and Heroism to Be Honored on Donate Life’s Rose Parade - Francisco "Paco" Rodriguez

News Chicago
CHICAGO, IL, Nov 28, 2011 (MARKETWIRE via COMTEX) -- In honor of his brother, "El Nino Azteca" or "The Aztec Kid," whose selfless gift saved the lives of five others, Alex Rodriguez will represent Chicago, his family and Gift of Hope Organ & Tissue Donor Network as a featured rider on the ninth Donate Life float in the 2012 Rose Parade(R).

Alex and the heroic story of his brother, professional boxer Francisco "Paco" Rodriguez, were carefully selected to participate in the nation's most visible campaign to inspire people to save lives as registered organ, eye, and tissue donors. A "floragraph" portrait of Paco, made entirely of organic floral materials, will be featured on a large floral timepiece that demonstrates the precious time we have to spend with our loved ones.

"Paco" Rodriguez was a proud Mexican-American who came from a very admired and respected family of boxers. Paco became a Chicago hometown favorite win…

How Israeli-Palestinian Cooperation Saved the Life of Abdullah Ramal

Israel Defense Forces

Suffering from chronic kidney disease, Abdullah Ramal crossed into Israel to undergo a life-saving surgery back in September. The five-year-old Palestinian underwent a kidney transplant at Beilinson Hospital.

The donor? His father. The funder? The Civil Administration of Judea and Samaria, which donated 380,000 NIS to fully cover Ramal’s surgery and medicine.

Ramal’s surgery also reflected a recent trend: Increased security and stability in Judea and Samaria have reinforced coordination between the Civil Administration and Palestinian people. In 2011, the Civil Administration assisted five Palestinian families, donating 2.5 million NIS for organ transplants.
Read more:

Washington - Making Sure Kidney Donors Fare As Well As Promised

Vos Iz Neias

Washington - More and more people are donating one of their kidneys to a loved one, a friend, even a stranger, and now a move is on to make sure those donors really fare as well as they’re promised.

Specialists insist the surgery rarely brings serious complications for the donor. What’s less certain is the risk of any long-term health consequences, in part because transplant centers can lose track of donors after they go home.

“Who’s taking care of the donor after the surgery? Really, no one is,” says kidney donor Krystal McLear, 32, of Indian Head, Md., who serves on a committee for the network that runs the U.S. organ transplant system.

The United Network for Organ Sharing is debating some new policies to change that. Among the proposals: A checklist for evaluating would-be donors and fully explaining the risks — plus requirements to better monitor those donors’ health and social stability for two years. Centers would have to track such things as the condition of the remain…

A death, a life connect two young families

San Bernardino County Sun | Melissa Pinion-Whitt

SAN BERNARDINO - A sonogram showed one of Emri Sjostrom's kidneys was the size of a pea. The other was barely visible.

If not for nightly dialysis and nourishment from a feeding tube, the 7-month-old Norco boy could have died.

His family finally received a call in June 2010 after waiting more than a year for a kidney donor.
"You need to come now," a nurse told Emri's mother, Soha Sjostrom.

But elation mixed with sadness when Emri's family found out who was donating the kidney.

It came from a 6-year-old San Bernardino boy named Amarion Adams, who was wounded June 13 in a drive-by shooting and died three days later.
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Tragic Ben draws up his Bucket List, UK

Shropshire Star

A 28-year-old man who has been given six months to live has drawn up a ‘Bucket List’ of dreams he wants to fulfil in the time he has left.

Ben Hughes, aged 28, from Harlescott, in Shrewsbury, was born with a congenital heart disease and struggled to lead a ‘normal’ life.
In 2007 he underwent a successful heart and lung transplant.

Following the operation he lived a normal life but last December he fell ill with flu-like symptoms and in April doctors discovered that Ben’s lungs had gone into chronic rejection.

Last week he was told his condition was incurable and that he had just six months to live. Taking inspiration from the Hollywood film ‘The Bucket List’, which sees Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman portray two dying men who embark on a tour of the world to do the things they have always wanted to before they die, Ben has now written his own list and friends and family have been busy trying to make his dreams come true.

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Rethinking the Fairness of Organ Transplants

Harvard Business School - Working Knowledge | Dennis Fisher

A proposal out of Harvard and MIT to rethink how kidney transplants are allocated could result in a fairer system giving patients longer lives.

The new empirical model, which is intensely data driven, would provide a flexible framework to policymakers responsible for deciding which potential recipients get organs as they become available—decisions that must be based on various priority and fairness criteria.
"The new system will explicitly give points based on the likelihood of survivability."

The method—the work of Nikolaos Trichakis of Harvard Business School and Dimitris Bertsimas and Vivek F. Farias, both of MIT's Sloan School—can help policy designers create the most equitable point system based on their chosen constraints and criteria. They detail the proposed model in a new paper, Fairness, Efficiency and Flexibility in Organ Allocation for Kidney Transplantation.

In early simulations, the model suggests tha…

Volunteer Spotlight: Jane Keller

Gift of Life Donor Program

A Young Man’s Heart Of Gold Lives On Through Others
My family has been connected with Gift of Life since August of 1994. On August 18, 1994, our youngest son Joe drowned in a low-head dam near our home at the age of 14. He was pronounced dead three days later. Joe was attempting to save the life of a classmate who was caught in the hydraulics of the dam when he too was pulled under by the current. The classmate survived, but Joe was taken to the hospital for a very long several days of praying that he would make it through. When we were approached about organ donation, I was not interested at all. I felt that Joe had already given his life for a friend, and that was enough. Read more:

Couple feel call to give kidneys

The Des Moines Register | Regina Zibermints

After wife donates organ, Ankeny man realizes he, too, wants to give.
Sherry Whisler had never had such an epiphany.

Sitting next to Karen Harris in a Bible study at their Urbandale church on a Wednesday night last year, she suddenly realized that she would be the one to change, and perhaps save, Harris’ life.

“I can’t explain it,” she said. “I just knew that it would be me.”

Whisler asked Harris for her blood type, and how she could donate a kidney, setting off months of tests, surgery and recovery.

Then came a second realization: Whisler’s husband, Mike, told his wife he also wanted to donate. Read more:

Packet Sea Foam: Organ Donation: Real-life heroism

Island Packet | The Beaufort Gazatte | David Lauderdale

Thanks to Lynda Bouchard of Hilton Head Island for sharing a story about the gift of life.

"Mile Marker 29"

By Lynda Bouchard

As I walked the beach early one recent morning, most of the people I passed were casting nets and lines for fish. I was there fishing for stories. This one came easily at Mile Marker 29.

I saw my good friend, John Test, walking ahead, his head down and focused on the sandpipers darting along the ocean edge. He collects shells, and so as I passed him I asked if he'd found anything interesting.

"I'm not really looking for shells today," he said. "My uncle passed away last night. He was waiting for an organ transplant."

That stopped me cold in my tracks.

I knew the feeling of helplessness and loss, as I'd lost my husband two years ago, while he, too, was waiting for a transplant.

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Editorial: Benevolence is its own reward

The Topeka Capital-Journal

It has been said that benevolence is rewarding to those who give, as well as to those who receive.

If evidence is necessary, doubters have only to listen to Topekan Betty Hunt, who in the most trying time imaginable bestowed the gift of life on several people.

Readers of The Topeka Capital-Journal and by now should be familiar with Hunt’s story, published in the newspaper the day after Thanksgiving. Hunt’s 13-year-old son Antonio was fatally wounded in an accidental shooting in March 2000.

When Hunt was informed her son wouldn’t survive and was asked to donate his organs for transplant, she said no, insisting Antonio (Tony) would leave the world “the same way he came into it.” That response was understandable, particularly at a time of such sudden grief. But Hunt reconsidered after being asked to do so by the family’s pediatrician and signed the documents to begin the organ donor process. Read more:…

Artificial Tracheal Recipient Returns to Academic Study

Medscape | Larry Hand

The patient who received the world's first transplant of an artificial tracheobronchial airway seeded with his own stem cells now has almost normal lung function and is tumor free, according to a report published online November 24 in the Lancet.

Swedish doctors, led by Paolo Macchiarini, MD, PhD, from the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm, performed the surgery in June at the Karolinska University Hospital. The 36-year-old patient had respiratory difficulties due to a recurrent tracheal tumor that extended into both bronchi. The surgeons removed his trachea, along with the complete right main bronchus and the first 2 cm of the left main bronchus, and replaced it with the artificial organ. Read more:

Giving the gift of life

Daily Herald | Dixie Madsen
Guest Opinion

During the holidays, many of us think about giving and receiving gifts. What if that gift was the gift of life, sight or an improved way of life?

A mother recently blogged about watching the documentary "65 Red Roses" about a woman named Eva who suffered from cystic fibrosis and was waiting for a lung transplant. She described the documentary as "heart-breaking" in her blog; her 2-year-old daughter has cystic fibrosis. Watching Eva in the movie struggle to breathe was frightening because it gave her a glimpse of her daughter's future. This mother holds out the hope that when the disease progresses her daughter will receive the ultimate gift, a lung transplant that will allow her to breathe freely.

Unfortunately, this mother and daughter are not alone. Recently a 12-year-old girl collapsed at school. Medical tests determined that a condition previously thought to be asthma was actually heart disease and the girl needed a he…

Jasmine was 'brave little soldier', UK

Get Hampshire | Tim Harris

A YOUNG girl from Farnborough who became the first person in the UK to receive two different organ donations from her parents died earlier this month.

Jasmine Mirza, who died on November 11 aged seven, had received organ donations from both her parents, Sohrab Mirza and Cathie Locke, of Woburn Avenue.

Jasmine received part of her father Sohrab’s liver when she was a year old and had been diagnosed with liver failure. In 2008 she was given a kidney by her mother Cathie, making medical history.

Doctors treating Jasmine at the time said they had never heard of any cases where both parents had acted as donor for two different organs.

Since the second transplant, Jasmine had not been away from hospital for more than a month. Cathie said she would be greatly missed by all who knew her.

“Jasmine fought to the very end and was our very own brave soldier,” she said. Read more:

Liver transplants are saving lives in Oklahoma

News Oklahoma | Sonya Colberg

An Oklahoma City medical team's first and 1,000th liver transplants happened the same day, 19 years apart. Jay Dysart and Beth Meyers are both doing well and have found new life in remarkable organs.

The phone rang in the middle of the night.

This time it wouldn't be delivering terrible news, the way late-night phone calls tend to do. In fact, Beth Meyers hoped it could offer a chance at getting more precious years to be a mom to her 23-year-old daughter.

Would this be the call — would this be the rush to the hospital — would this be the time that everything would fall into place and doctors would save her life?

It was the seventh call for her in the 10 months since her liver cancer was identified as one similar to what killed her mother at a young age. Every time before, the organ wasn't right and she'd return home with the cancer still ravaging inside. But this time, the liver was a match and healthy.
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Rotary Lebanon running "to Donate Life"

Rotary Club of Beirut Phoenix

Building on previous year’s achievements, this year makes no exception, Around 250 members of Rotary and Rotaract clubs among which our dear governor Mr Ussama Barghouti, his wife Mrs Lina, Past governor Samir Seikaly and from Egypt PP Dr. Salwa Haddad , Rotarian families and friends participated on Sunday November 27 in The Beirut Marathon 2011. 
The event was coordinated by Rotary Club of Beirut Phoenix with the collaboration of ‘Sports 4ever’, under the slogan “Donate life…”. Each year Members and families run for a cause, this year Rotary Lebanon’s aim was to build awareness for organ donation in Lebanon and to raise funds to help NOOTDT an organ donation association to buy a refrigerator and the necessary supplies to prevent the shortage of serum necessary for transplantation which is crucial to save lives… and it was an amazing success everybody enjoyed the experience… Read more:

Steve Jobs' email to fan: "Life is Fragile

Top News Singapore | Jimmy Peterson

Available for download on Amazon is Mark Milian’s “Letters to Steve: Inside the E-mail Inbox of Apple's Steve Jobs” --- a collection of the rare moments when the iconic Steve Jobs became philosophical publicly; with quotes that apparently are among his most memorable!

The content of the e-mail correspondence that Jobs shared with his fans and well-wishers, acquaintances as well as strangers, is a clear indication that as the legendary Apple co-founder faced his own mortality, he views about human existence became increasingly poetic and philosophical.Read more:

Spiders Compete in 2011 HCA Virginia 8K

Steve Taylor Blog

(Richmond, VA) Nicol Traynor and Ryan Lee joined several of their University of Richmond teammates to compete in the 2011 HCA Virginia 8k on November 12th on the streets of Richmond to support Donate Life Virginia.
Traynor, who earned NCAA All-America honors during the 2011 outdoor track & field season in the 3K steeplechase, placed 3rd among the elite women’s field with a time of 26:35 for the 8K (~5 miles) event. The Spider senior has already qualified for the U.S. Olympic Team Trials next summer and used this fall to prepare for the indoor and outdoor track seasons. She went with the women’s leaders from the start before settling into third place. Read more:

PRIDE OF AUSTRALIA: Teen wins medal for organ donation push

Melbourne Leader | Michael Gleeson

A COURAGEOUS teenager has won the inaugural People’s Choice medal at the Pride of Australia awards.

Coen Ashton, who was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis at three weeks of age, was recognised for his tireless work in promoting the cause of organ donation.

The Queenslander, who is based in Docklands while awaiting a double lung transplant, also received the Child of Courage award at last week’s ceremony in Sydney.

Coen, 14, made a seven-week, 2000km jet ski trip along the Murray River to raise awareness of organ donation earlier this year.

More than 1000 people have since signed up as organ donors, many through his website,
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