Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

More organs for transplant when ICU docs help take care of brain dead donors, study finds

Date:
April 3, 2011
Source:
University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences
Summary:
More than twice as many lungs and nearly 50 percent more kidneys could be recovered for transplant operations if intensive care physicians were to work with organ procurement organization coordinators to monitor and manage donor bodies after brain death has occurred, according to a new analysis.

More than twice as many lungs and nearly 50 percent more kidneys could be recovered for transplant operations if intensive care physicians were to work with organ procurement organization (OPO) coordinators to monitor and manage donor bodies after brain death has occurred, according to an analysis by UPMC and University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine physicians that is now in the online version of the American Journal of Transplantation.

Related Articles


After a patient who has consented to be an organ donor is declared brain dead, an OPO coordinator takes over medical management and intensive care unit (ICU) physicians typically are no longer involved, explained lead author Kai Singbartl, M.D., assistant professor of critical care medicine at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and a UPMC intensivist. The OPO coordinators follow established protocols to maintain tissues and organs for eventual transplant.

"Our analysis shows an intensivist at the donor's bedside who aids and advises the OPO coordinator can result in a greater likelihood of recovering organs that are deemed acceptable for transplant, which would mean that each donor could help us save more lives, " he said. "The gap between the number of people on waiting lists and the number of available organs is growing, so measures that increase the pool of organs are very much needed."

In 2008, UPMC Presbyterian implemented an intensivist-led organ donor support team (ODST) approach in which after a potential organ donor was declared brain dead, one of six dedicated intensivists, who did not provide care for the donor prior to death, joined the OPO coordinator at the bedside. Standard protocols were supported by physician interventions, such as adjustments to optimize oxygenation and meticulously balance blood pressure and flow, fluids and other bodily functions to optimize the likelihood of sustaining as many organs as possible for transplant.

"We would care for donors for a few hours or up to a day, depending on medical needs and other factors," Dr. Singbartl said. "The number of donors in our study is not large enough to determine whether a particular medical intervention played a key role, but it's very clear from our experience that this team approach did make a difference."

Data from adult brain dead donors between July 1, 2008 and June 30, 2009 was compared to data from July 1, 2007 to June 30, 2008, before the ODST approach had been used. In the earlier time period, 31 percent, or 66 out of 210 potentially available organs were transplanted. In the ODST period, 44 percent, or 113 out of 258 potentially available organs were transplanted.

Most of the increase after implementation of the ODST approach was due to a more than 200% increase in transplanted lungs and a nearly 50% percent increase in transplanted kidneys. Heart and liver transplant rates did not change significantly.

"Conversion of medically unsuitable donors into actual donors, better resuscitation of unstable donors, optimization of organ function, and improved communication between OPO staff, ICU team and transplant surgeons" or the combination of these factors likely contributed to success and should be further evaluated, the researchers said.

Co-authors include Raghavan Murugan, M.D., A. Murat Kaynar, M.D., David W. Crippen, M.D., Richard L. Simmons, M.D., and Joseph M. Darby, M.D., Departments of Critical Care Medicine and Surgery, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine; and Kurt Shutterly, R.N., and Susan A. Stuart, R.N., Center for Organ Recovery and Education, Pittsburgh, Pa.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. K. Singbartl, R. Murugan, A. M. Kaynar, D. W. Crippen, S. A. Tisherman, K. Shutterly, S. A. Stuart, R. Simmons, J. M. Darby. Intensivist-Led Management of Brain-Dead Donors Is Associated with an Increase in Organ Recovery for Transplantation. American Journal of Transplantation, 2011; DOI: 10.1111/j.1600-6143.2011.03485.x

Cite This Page:

University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences. "More organs for transplant when ICU docs help take care of brain dead donors, study finds." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 3 April 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/03/110331104051.htm>.
University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences. (2011, April 3). More organs for transplant when ICU docs help take care of brain dead donors, study finds. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/03/110331104051.htm
University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences. "More organs for transplant when ICU docs help take care of brain dead donors, study finds." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/03/110331104051.htm (accessed November 23, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

WFP: Ebola Risks Heightened Among Women Throughout Africa

WFP: Ebola Risks Heightened Among Women Throughout Africa

AFP (Nov. 21, 2014) Having children has always been a frightening prospect in Sierra Leone, the world's most dangerous place to give birth, but Ebola has presented an alarming new threat for expectant mothers. Duration: 00:37 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Could Your Genes Be The Reason You're Single?

Could Your Genes Be The Reason You're Single?

Newsy (Nov. 21, 2014) Researchers in Beijing discovered a gene called 5-HTA1, and carriers are reportedly 20 percent more likely to be single. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Paralyzed Marine Walks With Robotic Braces

Raw: Paralyzed Marine Walks With Robotic Braces

AP (Nov. 21, 2014) Marine Corps officials say a special operations officer left paralyzed by a sniper's bullet in Afghanistan walked using robotic leg braces in a ceremony to award him a Bronze Star. (Nov. 21) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Milestone Birthdays Can Bring Existential Crisis, Study Says

Milestone Birthdays Can Bring Existential Crisis, Study Says

Newsy (Nov. 21, 2014) Researchers find that as people approach new decades in their lives they make bigger life decisions. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins