3 posts tagged “organ transplant”

Give the Gift of Life on National Donor Day

Posted February 13th, 2013 by

Valentine’s Day is all about showing your love for your significant other.  But what if it were also about showing your love for perfect strangers?

February 14th is National Donor Day, a day of awareness about how registering to be an organ donor can give someone a second chance at life.  Does your driver’s license currently indicate that you are a donor?  If not, and you’d like your organs (as well as potentially your tissues, marrow, platelets and blood) to help someone else after you are no longer here, sign up to be a donor today.  In the time it takes you to register, someone with a life-threatening condition will be added to the waitlist.

Wondering if your registration will really make a difference?  Here are a few statistics that help underscore the need for more donors:

  • 117,001 people are currently waiting for an organ transplant
  • 18 people will die each day while waiting for a new organ
  • 1 organ donor can save up to eight lives total

In particular, there is a need for more minority donors.  While organs are not matched according to race/ethnicity, there is a greater likelihood that compatible blood types and tissue markers – the critical elements of the matching process – will be found among members of the same ethnicity.  Thus, a greater diversity of donors could potentially increase access to transplantation, which is essentially the only treatment for end-stage organ failure (e.g. kidney failure, heart failure, liver failure).

Are you awaiting an organ transplant – or the recipient of one?  Join PatientsLikeMe to connect with others like you.  We have thousands of transplant patients among our members, including those with (or still awaiting) a heart transplant, kidney transplant, liver transplant, lung transplant and pancreas transplant. What’s it like to go through organ transplantation? Read our in-depth Patient Voice report on “Life After a Transplant” as well as our insightful interviews with liver transplant recipient Amy Tippins and kidney transplant recipient Michael Burke.


Have a Heart Today. Become a Donor.

Posted February 14th, 2012 by

Registering to Be a Donor Is About Giving Life to Another

February 14th is Valentine’s Day.  But it’s also National Donor Day.

Started in 1998 by the Saturn Corporation and United Auto Workers in cooperation with the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), this annual event is focused on five points of life:  organs, tissues, marrow, platelets and blood.  All of these can be donated to help save and/or improve the lives of others.

Here are a few numbers that help underscore the need:

  • 112,945 people are currently waiting for an organ transplant
  • 18 people will die each day while waiting for a new organ
  • 1 organ donor can save up to eight lives

Does your driver’s license indicate that you’re a donor?  If not, and you want to give others a second chance at life, sign up to be a donor today.  Worried you’re too old?  Don’t be.  The condition of your organs is more important than your age, and there are only a few absolute exclusions (such as HIV infection, active cancer and systemic infection).  So don’t rule yourself out when there’s a chance you could help.

Finally, there is a particular need for minority donors.  While organs are not matched according to race/ethnicity, there is a greater likelihood that compatible blood types and tissue markers – the critical elements of the matching process – will be found among members of the same ethnicity.  Thus, a greater diversity of donors could potentially increase access to transplantation for everyone.

A Snapshot of the Organ Transplant Patients at PatientsLikeMe

Are you awaiting an organ transplant – or the recipient of one?  Join PatientsLikeMe to connect with others like you.  We have hundreds of transplant patients among our members, including those with (or awaiting) a heart transplant, kidney transplant, liver transplant, lung transplant and pancreas transplant. What’s it like to go through transplantation? Read our recent interview with kidney transplant recipient and type 1 diabetes patient Michael Burke.


Extending Boston’s Commitment to Organ Transplantation

Posted August 18th, 2010 by

Attending the National Kidney Foundation’s 2010 U.S. Transplant Games was an eye-opening experience.  And it wasn’t just the thousands of transplant recipients, living donors, and donor families who made the event so memorable.  It was the passionate commitment to transplantation by so many different individuals and organizations.

wallDozens of nonprofits, donor and support groups, and pharmaceutical manufacturers descended upon Madison, WI to meet those touched by transplantation and celebrate their stories.  An incredible number and variety of resources were offered by these organizations to drive donor awareness, support the needs of transplant recipients, and facilitate connections with others (see the photo of Novartis’ “Wall of Inspiration”).  The simple act of pin trading between two people often caused them to open up about their transplantation experience and what brought them to the Games.

As the founding sponsor of the Games two decades ago, Novartis continued to serve as the event’s lead sponsor and pledged its continued support in the future.  Other noteworthy pharmaceutical sponsors of the Games included Pfizer, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Astellas, and Genentech.  Together with Novartis, these organizations have invested many years and many millions of dollars developing the immunosuppressants that transplant recipients need to maintain the health of their organs.

Novartis also demonstrated its commitment to organ recipients last year by partnering with PatientsLikeMe to develop the Transplants Community.  Novartis wants to learn from this Community – just as patients learn from one another – what challenges patients face and what unmet needs can be addressed.  By partnering with patient-centric organizations like Novartis, PatientsLikeMe fulfills its mission of improving patients’ lives by discovering important research insights through shared patient data.

PatientsLikeMe is headquartered just outside Boston, which is coincidentally the city where the first successful kidney transplantation occurred more than 50 years ago.  We are proud to extend Boston’s long-standing commitment to organ candidates and recipients.

PatientsLikeMe member cfidyk