Wednesday, September 23rd, 2009

Lighting up Lives After Life

DSC_5253Abhilasha, a 16 and half month old baby girl became the youngest cadaver organ donor in the country, when her parents decided to donate her kidneys and eyes. Ironically, little Abhilasha was suffering from Bilary Atresia and had come to Apollo hospitals, New Delhi for a liver transplant, which could not be performed due to underlying neurological condition.
“Abhilasha and her parents came to us from Bhopal for a liver transplant but a CT scan of her brain revealed that she was suffering with Hydrocephalus. Her neurological condition had to be resolved before a liver transplant could be offered but sadly due to worsening liver function and deterioration in her neurological condition she could not undergo a transplant.” said Dr. Anupam Sibal Group Medical Director Apollo Group of Hospitals.
“We decided to donate Abhilasha’s organs because we felt and understood the need and importance of an organ which Abhilasha could never receive. Today I feel proud that my daughters’ contribution has breathed a new life in another family. We have kept our daughter’s soul alive forever” said Vineeta, Abhilasha’s mother.
Abhilasha is survived by one sibling, Ashlesha, who is now three and a half years old and studying in nursery. Her father Rajendra Rahurikar is a businessman dealing in telecom and fitness equipments. Her mother, Vineeta Rahurikar is a homemaker and a creative writer.

Shortage of donors and organs has impeded the necessary thrust required to save more lives. Dr. Prathap C. Reddy, Chairman, Apollo Group of Hospitals said, “Today we pay a tribute to Abhilasha and honour her parents for taking such a courageous and a noble step which will surely give a new ray of hope to many patients. Pledging of organs can make a huge difference for thousands of patients who are waiting in need for an organ. Any individual regardless of age is a potential organ donor; provided the health of the organ is in good shape and family members agree for organ donation”


Organ donation could result from the free will of a person when he is alive, or the will of his relatives when he is dead, to donate his organs to a person who is suffering from a disease.
Live donation too is quite common, like kidney transplant, where a kidney can be transplanted. Similarly a live donor can transplant a part of the liver. The other kind of donation is the cadaver donation, which is possible in the case of an individual who is brain dead.
Brain Dead???
In the case of brain death, a person is put on a respirator or a life support system. This system keeps the heart pumping for 24 to 48 hours. In this case, all the organs are supplied with blood, and hence are still alive. This is when organ transplantation is possible.
However, when death occurs due to heart failure, the organs too die from a lack of blood supply. These organs cannot be donated.
Brain death often occurs in the case of accidents where severe head injuries are sustained. Only a doctor can certify a patient as being brain dead. A brain dead person will never wake up or be able to walk or perform any activity again. However, brain death isn’t a coma. A person in coma is still very much alive.
Once a patient is declared brain dead, it is now up to the doctor to suggest organ donation to the relatives of the deceased. Once the family gives consent, the doctors can go ahead and perform the necessary procedures for the removal of organs.


The Human Organ Transplantation Act has legalized the concept of ‘Brain Death’ in the year 1994. Still cadaver organ transplantation in India, is very much under infancy
How many cadaver organ transplants were made from January 95 to 2001
Cadaver Organ Donation and Transplantation in India

Kidney 379
Heart 34
Liver 12
Pancreas 02
Lungs 01
Total 428

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