Interesting Read From Scientific American Medicine

This was a professional issue that would irk me while I was working at Medscape.  I’d see such embargoes come through  via email on important information & it would instantly anger me.

I would think to myself, “This is a free press,  if you’re going to release important news, release it when you want it released.  Don’t hold everyone hostage to print it all on a certain day or under your chosen timing & make them sit on it because you’re not ready for it to come out yet. Don’t be an effing tease.”

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Ari Sytner Commits Himself to Raising Organ Donation Awareness

This is a subject I haven’t really touched on.  The ongoing controversy & commentary as to whether inmates can or should be allowed to donate their organs.   I didn’t know how to broach it until my friend Ari, who is a living kidney donor & a rabbi, weighed in on it himself when asked by 60 Minutes Australia.

I know Ari through Twitter & now through supporting his Kickstarter campaign. (Please check it out & back his project, it really is worth it).

He’s a very positive person who I am so happy does so many things to champion organ donation as a whole, but especially living donation as well.

I’m glad he’s discussing some of the more hot button issues like inmate donation.

On the recipient end, we are always given the choice.

Yes, there could be certain diseases that we could be exposed to but the organs are tested thoroughly.

We are told the nature of the high risk donation & given the detail & they re-iterate the risks.  We can then choose to accept or not accept the organ.

Even if I ran the small risk of contracting hepatitis I would still accept the organ because Hepatitis can be treated & managed & I know it wasn’t given to me intentionally because it was screened.  The risk is, if I pass on that organ & I’ve already been waiting 7 months for a call to come already, it could be another 7 months I might have to wait again if I decide I’m not comfortable with the risk.   It’s up to the recipient to weight their quality of life & situation on a case-by -case basis.

No good or willing organ should be discarded just because it came from an inmate. Inmates are people.   I  don’t think they should be forced or mandated to donate if they clearly don’t want to, but I would willingly accept an inmates organs & treasure them for the gift they are.

I know others may see things differently,  but it is something you cannot decide until you’re there in that moment in the wait yourself & fighting for your life.

Thank you Ari, for what you are doing to increase donation awareness as a whole but to reach out to others to encourage them to also choose living donation if possible.

I know several who have benefitted from the experience (both donors & recipients) so it really does warm my heart to see someone so committed to championing that & also taking on issues that might seem to be a barrier or an excuse not to donate.

(Photo credit:  Ari’s twitter profile photo)

 

 

 

Important Article: Misinformation From Brain Death Stories Impacts Organ Donation.

This article may just be for journalism nerds like me…but I’m glad Donate Life California passed this along.

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New Forms of Transplant Raise New Questions

I know I name drop Arthur Caplan’s name quite a bit. Yet, he really nails many ethical issues on the head.   I’ve been reading quite a bit on transplant advances & new forms of transplants being done lately.  It’s exciting to me on one hand, on the other it deeply conflicts me…

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Transplant Advances: New Life For Pig-To-Human Transplants

I know “science-y” stuff like this Nature medicine news feature is a hard grasp for some people.  But allow me to try & break down why articles like these are important from a practical standpoint.

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HOT BUTTON: Response To “Wealthiest – Not Sickest – Patients May Have Edge In Organ Transplants”

I saw this Science Daily news article in my Twitter feed after arriving back home after a cancelled Social Security Disability testing appointment today.  I was already a bit miffed because I should have gotten a call or notice it was cancelled but didn’t.   However, when I came across this article I was really ambivalent about it.  I know this is a known issue. I am not naive to the ethical issues it raises at all, but I’m not sure this is completely true.  At least in how this discussion is framed.

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800 Pound Gorillas Starving When They Need Feeding

Thinking outside of common subjects that my rare disease communities are hesitant to discuss (for fear of coming across as morbid or negative), I was thinking of innovations we should be celebrating, but are hesitant to because they may run afoul of our friends & family’s personal ethics & would cause several heated personal & social media discussions over the ethics involved.

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