A 30-year-old soldier of the Indian Army got a new lease of life at Army's Research and Referral (R&R) Hospital after he was transplanted with another heart, donated by a 29-year-old soldier who was declared brain dead. For the transplantation, the heart was airlifted from the Siachen base medical facility to the R&R Hospital in the national capital on Wednesday.
NK Rao, suffering from multiple organ dysfunction, received the help after the doctors treating him raised a nationwide alert pleading donors to come forward for the organ donation so as to save his life.
Nearly a week after their request, NK Rao received a heart from another Army Jawan who has been declared brain dead by doctors. The organ was donated after the family members of the 29-year-old soldier gave their consent.
According to doctors Rao is in "critically balanced state and is suffering from pre-existing Azotaemia and Leucocytosis".
Medical experts are of the belief that scores of organs that can be transplanted in India mainly get wasted each year due to lack of infrastructure for harvesting and preservation of organs and their storage.
Also due to lack of any centralised registry system in India, no records of the potential donors and recipients can be found during the time of emergency. Experts opine that one of the major causes is the reluctance on the part of relatives to donate organs due to superstition.
Adding to woes is the fact that donated organs often do not meet the strict specification for transplantation.
Countries like the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, and The Netherlands have a proper family consent system in place that helps in increasing the number of donors. In these countries, according to various reports, the donation has increased at least two folds per million population (PMP) averaging between 10-30 PMP.