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Organ Transplants Information

  • An organ transplant is the transplantation of a whole or partial organ from one body to another (or from a donor site on the patient's own body), for the purpose of replacing the recipient's damaged or failing organ with a working one from the donor site. Organ donors can be living, or deceased (previously referred to as cadaveric)...
  • Types of transplants include:

    Autograft: A transplant of tissue from one to oneself. Sometimes this is done with surplus tissue, or tissue that can regenerate, or tissues more desperately needed elsewhere (examples include skin grafts, vein extraction for CABG, etc.) Sometimes this is done to remove the tissue and then treat it or the person, before returning it (examples include stem-cell autograft and storing blood in advance of surgery).

    Allograft: An allograft is a transplanted organ or tissue from a genetically non-identical member of the same species. Most human tissue and organ transplants are allografts.

    Isograft: A subset of allografts in which organs or tissues are transplanted from a donor to a genetically identical recipient (such as an identical twin). Isografts are differentiated from other types of transplants because while they are anatomically identical to allografts, they are closer to autografts in terms of the recipient's immune response.

    Xenograft: A transplant of organs or tissue from one species to another. Examples include porcine heart valves, which are quite common and successful, a baboon-to-human heart (failed), and piscine-primate (fish to non-human primate) islet (i.e. pancreatic or insular tissue), the latter's research study directed for potential human use if successful.

    A variety of organs can be transplanted, including:

    Thoracic Organs: Heart (Deceased-donor only), Lung (Deceased-donor and Living-Donor), En bloc Heart/Lung (Deceased-donor only)

    Abdominal Organs: Liver (Deceased-donor and Living-Donor), Kidney (Deceased-donor and Living-Donor), Pancreas (Deceased-donor and rarely Living-Donor), Small bowel (Small Intestine) (Deceased-donor and Living-Donor), Kidney-Pancreas (Sometimes simultaneous, sometimes in separate procedures) (Deceased-donor, Living-Donor, and combined deceased/living (e.g. kidney from living donor, pancreas from deceased donor)), Combined Liver-Kidney (Generally Deceased-donor only), Combined Liver-Small Bowel (Deceased-donor only)

    Other Organs: Hand (Deceased-donor only), Cornea (Deceased-donor only), Skin graft including Face transplant (almost always autograft), Penis (Living-donor only)

    Tissues, Cells, and Fluids: Islets of Langerhans (Pancreas Islet Cells) (Deceased-donor and Living-Donor), Bone marrow/Adult stem cell (Living-Donor and Autograft), Blood transfusion/Blood Parts Transfusion (Living-Donor and Autograft), Blood vessels (Autograft and Deceased-Donor), Heart valve (Deceased-Donor, Living-Donor and Xenograft[Pig]), Bone (Deceased-Donor, Living-Donor, and Autograft), Skin (Deceased-Donor, Living-Donor, and Autograft)

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