Opioid epidemic in the US: more drug-related deaths, more organ donors

Opioid epidemic in the US: more drug-related deaths, more organ donors

In the
USA The number of available donor organs has risen unexpectedly – and this is precisely the cause of the devastating opiod crisis: the number of drug-related deaths that donated at least one organ has increased from 59 (2000) to 1029 (2016). Nearly 14 percent of all organ donations meanwhile go back to this. But how certain are the organs of drug-related deaths for the 110,000 people in the United States on the
waiting list stand? Researchers at the University of Utah in Brigham are now giving the go-ahead for their lungs and hearts. Looking at the transplant records of 2360 17-year-old patients, they found that donor hearts and lungs from drug-related deaths worked as well one year after transplantation as those from people who had died from a stroke, cerebral hemorrhage, or gunshot wounds. Mandeep Mehra’s team reports on this in the New England Journal of Medicine.

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