Healthy organs mean a healthy life. To continue leading one, it would mean that your internal organs have to function normally at all times. But what happens if a vital organ starts to behave abnormally? Well, it not only affects your entire body but can have a huge impact on how you lead your life after that as well.
Today, medical science has certainly evolved, and for good. Because of this, many major organ transplantations are now possible. This helps people with chronic illnesses to live a fulfilled life and healthier individuals to lead a normal life.
Let us learn about organ transplantation a little more in detail.
Why is an Organ Transplantation Needed?
Organ transplantation is performed when a certain organ in the body fails to function to its potential, further leading to health complications and mortality. To save an individual’s life, the doctors may suggest an organ transplantation surgery as a last resort.
Many a times, chronic conditions require individuals to undergo organ transplantation as the terminal organ fails to function. Some of these conditions include kidney disease, cystic fibrosis, acute diabetes, congenital heart disease (CHD), etc. Moreover, people suffer from liver failure due to severe injuries in accidents and cirrhosis.
The individual undergoing an organ transplant surgery is given a new chance at life, especially when survival is the question after being diagnosed with end-stage critical organ failure. Organ transplants available today are highly specialised and cater to the needs of a significant population in India.
Types of Organ Transplantations
Ideally, organ transplantations are restricted to vital organs of the body. But the advancements in medical science has granted permission for several other organ transplantations as well. It allows for a long lifespan and improves the quality of life one leads. The types of organ transplantations possible are as follows –
- Heart transplant
- Lung transplant
- Liver transplant
- Pancreas transplant
- Cornea transplant
- Kidney transplant
- Trachea transplant
- Skin transplant
Organ Transplantation Requires a Donor – How to Find One?
Individuals waiting for organ transplantation usually have to wait for years before they receive a donor organ. In case the donor is a relative, one can bypass the organ transplant waiting list, and the application is less likely to be rejected. Otherwise, a doctor helps the individual get on the waiting list.
At first, the individual has to undergo a thorough evaluation that determines whether they are suitable for the transplantation or not. Once the assessment is passed, the individual is officially put on the organ transplant list. The list helps match the individual with the earliest possible donor. The donor is the person who has granted permission to donate their organ after death.
Organ Transplantation Requires a Donor – How to Become One?
Any individual can be a donor, regardless of their age or health conditions. Most people can donate at least a few organs, such as cornea and skin. Know that the list of organ transplantation is long, and becoming an organ donor will help save lives of those in desperate need.
From newborns to senior citizens, anyone can register to become an organ donor. However, individuals under the age of 18 years will need parental consent to become a registered donor. Moreover, people can register to become a living donor as well. These donors come to rescue during organ transplantations like kidney, pancreas, lung, or liver.
How to Prepare For an Organ Transplantation?
Individuals who have to undergo organ transplantation will have to be financially, psychologically, mentally, and physically prepared. It is important to understand that getting a donor could mean that one has to wait for several years.
During this time, the recipient has to cultivate patience and positive attitude. The medical team entailed in this process needs to be aware of the individual’s psychological condition. Thereafter, the individual could be requested to seek professional help before undergoing surgery.
Once the individual is declared fit to undergo the organ transplantation, they should be prepared financially to pay for the expenses. The surgery attracts significant medical and treatment expenses, which can range anywhere between INR 5 Lakhs and INR 20 Lakhs.
Here, it is obvious for people to avail their health insurance plan benefits to take care of the said expenses. But what happens if the health coverage falls short? So, to avoid such a dreadful situation, it is wise to have another insurance plan that helps cover these costs. This plan could be a term insurance policy with critical illness benefit.
Many insurers offer critical illness cover to enhance the coverage of the term insurance plans. Bajaj Allianz Smart Protect Goal Term Insurance plans available on Finserv MARKETS offer critical illness cover. The policy covers for 55 critical illnesses, among which 19 are minor critical illnesses, and 36 are major critical illnesses. Organ transplantation is one such critical health condition that is covered under this plan.
Organ Transplantation Surgery Process
After the individual who is undergoing the transplantation is declared fit by the doctors, they can proceed with the organ transplantation surgery.
The process of organ transplantation involves the harvesting of an organ from a living or dead donor’s body into the recipient’s body. This surgery is performed by professionals and requires several post-surgery tests to ensure whether the donor and recipient are compatible for organ transplantation.
Risks and Complications Involved in Organ Transplantation
A major risk involved in any organ transplantation is the risk of rejection of the transplanted organ. In medical terms, the immune system of the body is designed to reject anything that it perceives as foreign tissue automatically.
Hence, the blood and tissue types of the donor and recipient are matched before the transplantation surgery. This process helps reduce the risk of rejection of the organ. Doctors may also use immunosuppressant drugs to help the recipient’s body accept the transplanted organ readily.
Other complications of organ transplantation involve infection due to surgery, heart failure during the surgery, excessive bleeding, and drug reaction. However, chances of these complications are quite low as a team of professionals performs the procedure.
Medical Treatments and Precautions to be Taken after the Organ Transplantation
It is true that the individual who has undergone organ transplantation enjoys immediate relief and has a better quality of life after the surgery. However, one needs to be vigilant in terms of medication and lifestyle.
Adapting risky habits such as smoking, drinking, taking drugs, or skipping medications can increase the chances of organ failure at any time in the future. Moreover, it is important to undertake check-ups with the associated medical team, repeatedly.
The immunosuppressant drugs prescribed to the recipient before and after the surgery are subjected to change. The recipient may acquire a reaction from it, or the drugs don’t have any effect on them over time. Hence, regular check-ups are necessary to attain full recovery.
The recipient has to monitor their activity, as per the doctor’s advice. They have to stick to a strict nutritional diet that allows their body access to micro- and macro-nutrients daily. Moreover, it is necessary to take care of the hygienic condition in and around your homes and offices.
The Road to Recovery
One needs to pay attention to the recovery of the body after organ transplantation. The body goes through a lot of changes before and after the surgery. Hence, the recovery steps need to be followed strictly by the patient.
Many people who undergo organ transplantation usually return to their normal routine after two to three months. However, the patient is observed for their condition after the surgery, response to the medication, and so on. If one sticks to the precautions explained earlier, it is possible to lead a healthy life after organ transplantation.
FAQs related to Organ Transplantation
Q: What organs and tissues can be transplanted?
A: The following is the list of organs and tissues that can be transplanted –
- Heart valve
- Bone marrow
- Middle ear
- Connective tissues
Q: What are the benefits of organ transplantation?
A: The benefits of organ transplantation are explained as follows –
- It allows the patient to lead a healthy and long life
- The patient no longer has to endure pain from dysfunctional organ
- Helps avoid medical procedures like dialysis
- It improves the quality of life
- Helps in treating congenital disabilities that can be fatal in the future
Q: What are the common signs of organ rejection?
A: A few common signs of organ rejection are as follows –
- Pain in the transplanted part of the body
- Constant flu-like symptoms
- Younger individuals may experience mood swings
- Change in weight
- Change in heart rate
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