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Spontaneous Decision of Organ Donation in Patients Signing Informed Consent for Liver Transplantation

Transplantation Proceedings
DOI: 10.1016/j.transproceed.2013.01.022
  • Medicine


Abstract The shortage of postmortem donor organs is a well-known problem in Germany. Willingness in the general population is 80%, but less than 14% have an organ donor card. We evaluated the free decision of liver transplant candidates who filled out a donor card before signing the informed consent for the transplant procedure. We analyzed 122 patients of mean age 55.9 years (range, 15.4–74.1) who signed an informed consent for liver transplantation between January 10, 2007, and January 24, 2012. The patients received the original text of the German organ donor card with tick boxes on the informed consent form for liver transplantation. All patients were informed that their decision had no impact on further management. Patients were able to choose between (1) becoming a donor, (2) refusal, (3) transfer of the decision to another person, or (4) no decision. All patients signed the informed consent to be listed for liver transplantation: 73.8% (n = 90) chose to become a donor; 5.7% (n = 7) refused; 5.7% (n = 7) transferred the decision to another person; and 14.8% (n = 18) did not come to a decision. Interestingly, not all candidates for liver transplantation were willing to become an organ donor in the time of expressed consent. However, willingness to sign the donor card was much higher among liver transplant candidates compared with the general population.

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