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'Brain dead' cases should be notifiable: AIIMS director

IANS  |  New Delhi 

It should be made mandatory for every hospital to notify 'brain dead' cases without delay, so that donation of organs is more efficient, M.C. Mishra, director of the All India Institute of Medical Sciences, said Thursday.

"Every morning I am notified about the cases of brain deaths in the intensive care unit (ICU), with nearly 80 to 100 cases recorded in a year. However, the conversion rate is as less as 10 percent," Mishra said, adding that early declaration could help in increasing cadaver organ donation.

Conversion rate refers to the rate at which organs are donated or collected from bodies for the needy patients.

"Even a 10 percent conversion will be great," he said.

MIshra said one of the main reasons for such a low conversion rate was the refusal of the family of the deceased to donate a dead kin's organs.

He was speaking at an event that marked the completion of 300 living donor liver transplant cases in the year 2013 by Apollo Hospitals here.

"It is indeed an achievement to complete more than 300 living donor liver transplants in a single year. Liver transplantation has come a long way since its inception - we have witnessed considerable progress in techniques, procedures and affordability of the treatment," Mishra said.

Speaking at the event, Subhash Gupta, chief liver transplant surgeon, Indraprastha Apollo Hospitals, said: "We have been successful in changing 305 lives. This means conducting over 600 operations, each lasting 12 to 16 hours. It has only been possible because of the hard work of the entire team."

Fortyone-year-old David Khonglah, who was the 300th patient to be operated upon for a liver transplant Dec 27 last year, said the operation had given him a new lease of life.

"I underwent the transplant procedure almost 21 days back, and today I feel fine. I have no problems whatsoever," he told IANS.

Humaira Ashraf, a 21-year-old from Pakistan who donated a part of her liver to her father, said she was discharged after eight days of the surgery, and now feels hale and hearty.

"Though there are no restrictions, I have been advised to not use the stairs and lift heavy items. But it is just a matter of a few months," said the visibly proud 21-year-old daughter.

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First Published: Thu, January 16 2014. 18:28 IST