Liver is one of the most sought after solid organ. In UK there is an increase in demand as there is a rise in the death of number of patients who do not receive transplants.
Hence it was decided that a non-heart beating donor is potentially to increase the supply of organs by as much as 20%. This was reported in the British Medical Journal. They say that it will boost the supply of human organs for transplantation.
In general liver donation rates are poor in the UK. Statistics show that in UK about 60 people die on the waiting list each year and up to 80 are removed from the list as their condition deteriorates.
Doctors use various techniques to increase the number of organs available for transplantation. One such mode is the split liver transplantation where one liver given to two recipients or living donor transplants are performed.
Recently it was found that the non-heart beating donors are a potential source, where organs are retrieved after a period of five minutes during which death is certified. Statistics show that they would add to about 10-20% of the liver donations in UK.
The British Transplant Society has recently given a detailed account and published guidelines on all aspects of non-heart beating donation, including ethical and legal issues.