ps. When I was younger I use to think that if I sign up to be an organ donor somehow I would die before my time like I was jinxing myself or something but for me I now believe that when its your time...it's your time and I don't need my organs any longer but someone does.
See Everyone soon!!!
Organ donation: Don't let mythes stand in your way
Unsure about donating organs for transplant? Don't let rumors stand in your way of saving lives.
It seems simple enough: Donate organs. Save lives. Yet many people don't, and many lives are lost as a result.
More than 95,000 people are on the U.S. organ transplant waiting list, waiting for kidneys, livers, pancreases, intestines, bone marrow, hearts and lungs. Nearly 6,000 people died waiting for an organ transplant in 2006 — that's 16 people a day.
If you've delayed your decision to be a donor because of a belief you've never fully explored, here are answers to some common organ transplant myths and concerns.
|Myth. If I agree to donate my organs, my doctor or the emergency room staff won't work as hard to save my life. They'll remove my organs as soon as possible to save somebody else.|
|Reality. When you go to the hospital for treatment, doctors focus on saving your life — not somebody else's. You'll be seen by a doctor whose specialty most closely matches your particular emergency. The doctor in charge of your care has nothing to do with transplantation.|
|Myth. Maybe I won't really be dead when they sign my death certificate. It'll be too late for me if they've taken my organs for transplantation. I might have otherwise recovered.|
|Reality. Although it's a popular topic in the tabloids, in reality, people don't start to wiggle a toe after they're declared dead. In fact, people who have agreed to organ donation are given more tests to determine that they are truly dead than are those who haven't agreed to organ donation.|
|Myth. My family will be charged for donating a loved one's organs.|
|Reality. The organ donor's family is never charged for donating. Your family is charged for the cost of all final efforts to save your loved one's life, and those costs are sometimes misinterpreted as costs related to organ donation. Costs for organ removal go to the transplant recipient. If you receive a bill for what you believe are costs related to organ donation, talk to the billing department of the hospital. You may have misunderstood the charges, or the costs may have been misdirected. Funeral expenses are still the responsibility of the donor's family.|
|Myth. My loved one has suffered so much because of his illness. I don't want him or her to suffer anymore.|
|Reality. Your loved one is dead at the time of donation and cannot feel pain. Even after death, every effort is made to ensure that your loved one's body is treated with the same degree of respect as is someone who is alive.|
|Myth. Race plays a role in determining who gets an organ.|
|Reality. The national organ transplant waiting list is colorblind. Among all of the medical data listed on the transplant list for each person waiting, no race information is specified. When a donor organ becomes available, those allocating the organ don't know the race of those waiting for it. Allocation is made according to medical data, the severity of the illness and time spent on the waiting list.|
|Myth. Rich, famous and powerful people always seem to move to the front of the line when they need a donor organ. There's no way to ensure that my organs will go to those who've waited the longest or are the neediest.|
|Reality. The rich and famous aren't given priority when it comes to allocating organs. It may seem that way because of the amount of publicity generated when celebrities receive a transplant, but they are treated no differently from anyone else. In fact, the United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS), the organization responsible for maintaining the national organ transplant network, subjects all celebrity transplants to an internal audit to make sure the organ allocation was appropriate. Remember, too, that it would be unfair to deny someone a transplant simply because he or she is a celebrity.|
|Myth. I want my loved one to have an open-casket funeral. That can't happen if his or her organs or tissues have been donated.|
|Reality. Like an autopsy, organ and tissue donation doesn't interfere with having an open-casket funeral. If organs are taken, the body is stitched up as if the person were alive and had undergone surgery. The body is clothed for burial, so the stitches aren't visible. With skin donation, a very thin layer of skin similar to a sunburn peel is taken from the donor's back, and because the donor is clothed and lying on his or her back in the casket, no one can see any difference. For eye donation, an artificial eye is inserted, the lids are closed, and again, no one can tell any difference. For bone donation, a rod is inserted where bone is removed. The body is stitched up and clothed, so no one can see any difference.|
|Myth. I'm too old to donate. Nobody would want my organs.|
|Reality. There's no defined cutoff age for donating organs. Organs have been successfully transplanted from donors in their 70s and 80s. The decision to use your organs is based on strict medical criteria, not age. Don't disqualify yourself prematurely. Let the doctors decide at your time of death whether your organs and tissues are suitable for transplantation.|
|Myth. I'm not in the greatest health, and my eyesight is poor. Nobody would want my organs or tissues.|
|Reality. Very few medical conditions automatically disqualify you from donating organs. The decision to use an organ is based on strict medical criteria. It may turn out that certain organs are not suitable for transplantation, but other organs and tissues may be fine. Don't disqualify yourself prematurely. Only medical professionals at the time of your death can determine whether your organs are suitable for transplantation.|
|Myth. I would like to donate one of my kidneys now, rather than wait until my death. But I hear you can't do that unless you're a close family member of someone in need. I don't have a family member in need. I just want to help someone — even a perfect stranger.|
Reality. While that used to be the case, it isn't any longer. Whether it's a distant family member or friend you want to help or a complete stranger, you can donate a kidney while you're still alive. Not all transplant centers will agree to this, though.
If you find a transplant center that will consider your request, you will undergo extensive questioning to ensure that you are aware of the risks and to determine the rationale behind your desire to donate. For instance, donors will not be accepted if an exchange of money is to take place between donor and recipient or if there's any hint of coercion on the part of the recipient or the recipient's family. You will also undergo testing to determine that your kidneys are healthy and that you could live out the rest of your life with just one kidney.
Remember, you can also donate blood or bone marrow during your lifetime. Contact your local chapter of the American Red Cross for details on where you can donate or sign up.
|Myth. I'm under age 18. I'm too young to make this decision.|
|Reality. That's true, in a legal sense. But your parents can authorize this decision. You can express to your parents your wish to donate, and your parents might give their consent knowing that it's what you wanted. Children, too, are in need of organ transplants, and they usually need organs smaller than those an adult can provide.|
|Myth. Organ donation is against my religion.|
|Reality. Organ donation is consistent with the beliefs of most larger religious denominations in the United States. This includes Catholicism, Protestantism and most branches of Judaism. If you're unsure of or uncomfortable with your faith's position on donation, ask a member of your clergy.|
How to donate
Contrary to popular belief, signing a donor card or your driver's license does not guarantee that your organs will be donated. The best way to ensure that your wishes are carried out is to inform your family of your desire to donate. Doing this in writing ensures that your wishes will be considered. Hospitals seek consent of the next of kin before removing organs. If your family knows you wanted to be a donor, it makes it easier for them to give their consent.
A signed donor card or driver's license provides proof to your family that you wanted to be a donor, but these cards often aren't readily available. They also aren't usually legally binding. Signing a state or national donor registry is helpful but provides no guarantee that you'll be a donor. Registries aren't always checked and aren't legally binding. Again, the best way to ensure that your wishes are carried out is to tell your family that you want to be a donor.
If you have no next of kin or you doubt your family will agree to donate your organs, you can assign durable power of attorney to someone who you know will abide by your wishes. A lawyer can help you prepare this document.