Newborns as potential organ donors: a new perspective?

Ilias Chatziioannidis, Pagona Chouchou, Georgios Mitsiakos

Abstract


Demand for organ donation is increasing over the years in all age groups leading search for alternative sources. Donation pool expansion in newborns necessitates new approaches specifically for brain and circulatory death definition. The “dead donor rule” (the donor must be dead before organ removal starts) remains the cornerstone for organ procurement. Brain death definition and time determination of circulatory death need to be uniformly accepted by the scientific community. Technical advances, uniform protocols for death determination and new proceedings in surgical field can maximize donation pool along with establishment of end-of-life care standard procedures and persistent support of the family. Newborns can serve as multivisceral donors in the near future to meet the increasing demand for organs in this age group.

Keywords


organ donation; newborns; brain death; cardio-circulatory death; dead donor rule

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