Doctor: Misconceptions discourage potential organ donors

WPRI | Shannon Hegy

(WPRI) — A candle glows every night in Allison Lindgren’s window, a reminder of the heart beating in her chest. At 30 years old, Lindgren will never forget about the 6-year-old girl she never met, whose organ saved her life.

“She was from the New Orleans area. To know that her heart 18 years later is still going in me, she must have a had a pretty strong heart,” said Lindgren.

Born with congenital heart disease, Lindgren needed a heart transplant at 11 years old. She was put on the list and skyrocketed to the top when her health plummeted, leaving her with just two weeks to live. That little girl from Louisiana was her saving grace, but others aren’t so lucky.

“It is a frustrating process when patients have to wait for a deceased donor,” Dr. Paul Morrisey said.

Morrissey knows that excruciating waiting game all too well. He’s been performing pancreas and kidney transplants at Rhode Island Hospital since doctors there first started performing them 20 years ago. Continue reading