Organ and tissue donation are truly gifts of life. Each month, more than 2,000 new names are added to the national waiting list for organ transplants, and every 9 minutes, another person is added to the transplant waiting list, according to the Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network (OPTN). On average, 17 people die each day waiting for a transplant of a vital organ such as a kidney, liver or heart.
It’s estimated that as many as half of those who have IgA Nephropathy will develop end-stage renal disease and need a kidney transplant. There aren’t enough kidneys available, which delays vital care and causes many to wait on the transplant list. And IgA Nephropathy patients aren’t the only ones.
In addition to solid organ donation, every year, over 900,000 lives are helped through tissue and eye donation. Every donor can save 8 lives and improve over 75 more, according to the OPTN.
Donated heart valves can replace damaged ones, special grafts help patients with spinal deformities live normal lives, musculoskeletal tissues replaces bone, tendons and ligaments lost to cancer, severe trauma, degenerative joint disease, arthritis and other conditions. Skin can save the lives of burn victims. A single donor can help up to 50 people – often many more improve their lives. To find out how to be an organ, tissue and eye donor in your state, visit Donate Life at www.donatelife.net.
Laws regarding donation vary from state to state. Please make sure that you know your state’s requirements so that your wishes to become a donor are carried out.