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Kidney Donations In Middle East

Live kidney donation, the most recommended form of donations is regrettably less in the Arab world according to an expert. Hamad Medical Corporation (), recently, invited Dr Ahmed Adel, Professor of and Nephrology at Zagazig University and Secretary of the Arab Society of Nephrology, to lecture on the long-term consequences of kidney ailments and the challenges faced in the Arab world regarding organ donation.

The organ most commonly given by a living donor is the kidney as only one is needed to live a normal life. Worldwide, the highest demand amongst patients requiring organ transplant is for kidneys, followed by liver transplant.

In the region, there is an estimated average of 200 people per million population (pmp) requiring renal transplants, with a death-rate of 15-20 percent of patients on dialysis. In comparison, up to 20 pmp are in need of a heart transplant, 40 to 50 pmp require liver transplants, and a further 100 pmp need cornea transplants. Due to the scarcity of donors, most patients die before they receive a suitable match.

There are currently few people willing to donate in the Middle East and many patients on the waiting lists for transplants worldwide die before they are able to receive an organ.

Also only a few organs come from cadavers due to the religious and social issues and inadequate social awareness over how to define brain death in comatose patients.

There is also not the legal system in place in the region to allow doctors to take organs from cadavers that can then be given to patients in need. Having a defined legal structure to cover such medical situations is important particularly in cases of disputed brain death.

Dr. Adel added that much official attention is given to shorter term health problems, citing the recent scare with the H1N1 virus, whilst relatively little attention is given to longer-term illnesses that require greater treatment and provide greater strain on .

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