A Personal Plea about Organ Donation

Ever since I had the option, I have been listed as an Organ Donor on my driver's license. In the past 5-6 years, the importance of that designation has hit home with me. At that time, my sister-in-law was identified as having Polycystic Kidney Disease. Because a person had agreed, on his driver's license, to be an organ donor on death, my sister-in-law's life was saved by a new kidney.

In the past year, my wife found out that her polycystic kidney disease condition has degenerated to the point that it is likely she will need to go on dialysis or have a replacement kidney within the next 1 to 2 years.

I urge you to consider being an organ donor. Most states allow drivers to so designate on their license. You may save up to eight lives - heart (1), kidneys (2), pancreas (1), liver (2), and lungs (2) - by your thoughtful action. Living donors can donate bone marrow, kidney, liver (because it regenerates), and blood. If you do so, make sure that you tell your family members what you have decided. If a death occurs in a car accident, time is of the essence in ensuring a person's organs can be transferred to another person.

In the United States, over 90000 people are on waiting lists for kidneys alone. Average waiting time is 10 years, thus many people spend years on dialysis or die.

If you have questions about organ donation, the hyperlinked searches above can aid you in understanding the issues. I did not add Text Enhance links on this page.

Thank you,

Joseph Gonyeau

Polish translation courtesy Marina Stepanenko

Copyright 2012.  Joseph Gonyeau, klickitat.org All rights reserved. Revised: December 24, 2012.