Eye & Organ Donation
To make a decision of donating Eyes after death is not an easy one. A lot of support and motivation is required for a person to make up his/her mind to pledge eyes. It is also important that the relatives are informed about the donor's will to pledge and provide consent for the same. Eye donation is considered as one of the noblest of all causes. It is a great feeling when we donate our eyes to a person who has lived in darkness and brighten their lives to see the world. From darkness to light is the most precious and biggest of all gifts a person can get. It is a blessing not just for the patient but for the donor too. So we request you to be a part of this noble cause and lighten people's lives and help them to lead a bright life ahead.
In India, the number of curable blind people exceeds more than 7 lakhs. More than 30,000 new victims are added each year to the total list of patients to be cured. Much of the blindness in our country is treatable, or preventable. In our country there are more than 80 lakhs deaths happening every year but sadly the corneal donations do not exceed a few thousands. Lack of awareness and motivation among the general public and social and religious taboos are the main reason for this.
The cornea is the transparent and thin outer layer and it is the main focusing element of the eye.
Vision will be dramatically reduced if the cornea becomes cloudy from disease.
Eyes may be donated only after deathWhy Eye Donation?
Eye Donation shows your responsibility to society as a caring, committed citizen.
- Your eyes can live even after death.
- More importantly, we can light the life of two blind people by donating our eyes after our death.
- Not to mention, eye donation is one of the noblest of all causes.
Who can Donate Eyes?
Practically anybody can donate from the age of 1 year. There is no upper age limit. Even if the deceased has medical history of hypertension, diabetes, asthma, tuberculosis etc., even spectacle wearers and people who have undergone cataract operation can donate eyes.
Who can't Donate Eyes?
Persons who were infected with or died from AIDS, Hepatitis B or C, rabies, septicemia, acute leukemia, tetanus, cholera, meningitis or encephalitis cannot donate eyes.
How to Contact Nearby Eye Bank?
A special number 1919 (BSNL) has been allotted for eye banks. Most of the eye banks all over the country have this number, once information for eye donation is given here; the eye bank sends its team to collect the eyes. By calling this number details about eye donation can also be provided.
What is the procedure to Donate Eyes?
- Eye donation is only after death and should be collected within six hours of death.
- Eyes (corneas) will be collected at the donors place at any time in the day or night.
- Collection of eyes will take only 10-15 minutes and will not disfigure the face of the donor.
- A trained physician using sterile procedure removes the eyes.
- Artificial eyes are fitted in place to ensure no scar or disfigurement of the face.
- 10 cc of blood sample is also collected from the donor for testing.
It is very important to keep the following instructions:
- Close the eyelids of the deceased
- Place a polythene cover with few ice cubes on forehead.
- Wrap some ice cubes in damp cotton, & keep them on the eyes. This prevents the tissue from drying up, & helps keep it fresh.
- Switch off the fan.
- Raise the head of the deceased slightly by placing a pillow underneath.
- If possible apply antibiotic eye drops periodically to prevent infection.
- Inform the nearest eye bank, dial immediately 1919 (BSNL).
- Give the correct address with specific landmarks and telephone number to enable the eye bank team to locate the place easily.
- If the death certificate from the physician is available, keep it ready.
- Eye donation can be done only with the written consent of the next of kin in the presence of two witnesses.
The recipients are chosen from the eye bank`s waiting list and called for corneal transplant. The donor family should be happy knowing that the eyes have been used to restore the vision of two blind persons. A 'LETTER OF APPRECIATION' along with an EYE DONATION CERTIFICATE is sent to the Donor's family from the eye bank. Neither the patient knows whose cornea is used for him, nor do the relatives of the donor know who has received the cornea. This information is strictly confidential.
The gift of sight that will dramatically improve the quality of life for a person who has otherwise been lived a life of total darkness. Eye donation is one of the few causes that have received support from the famous and beautiful celebrities.
Anil Kumble, Amitabh Bachchan, Jaya Bachan, Aishwarya Rai, Revathi, Yukta Mookhey and Sunil Shetty are the few among them who pledged their eyes.
If they do why can't we?
Pledge your eyes now
For more details: www.donateeyes.org
Organ donation is a gracious act; it reaffirms our faith in humanity. For a patient with kidney failure an alternative such as dialysis is available till an organ becomes available, but for a patient with liver or heart failure; the only hope of living may be to have an immediate transplant. About 75% of those undergoing dialysis can be removed from their treatment if they are able to get a kidney transplant.
What is organ donation?
It means that a person pledges during his lifetime that after death, organs from his/her body can be used for transplantation to help terminally ill patients and giving them a new lease of life.
There are two ways of Organ donation:
Living related donors: only immediate blood relations (brother, sister, parents & children) can donate as per the Transplantation of Human Organ Act 1994.
Cadaver Organ donor: can donate all organs after brain death.
What is brain death?
It is the irreversible and permanent cessation of all brain functions. Brain can no longer send messages to the body to perform vital functions like breathing, sensation, obeying commands etc. Such persons are kept on artificial support (ventilation) to maintain oxygenation of organs so that the organs are in healthy condition until they are removed. Most cases of brain death are the end result of head injuries, brain tumors patients from Intensive care units. Organs of such patients can be transplanted in organ failure patients to provide them a new lease of life.
Once brain death is confirmed by doctors, the patient will be certified dead and the ventilator will be switched off. It is during this time - after a patient is certified dead - that medical staffers approach family members for a possible organ donation. An organ donor, despite having registered and given a card, is not necessarily an organ donor, as the donor's organs could not be removed without the family's consent. The hospital authorities need the family's agreement before they can start the process. Any objections can delay or prevent the organ donation process. Hence, it is important for those who register as organ donors to share such information with their family.
If the family agrees for donation, the brain-dead patient is supported by ventilator with tests conducted to check on the various organs and is taken to the operation theatre to switch off the ventilator and harvest the organs.
If the family disagrees, the ventilator will be switched off at the ICU itself.
Organ donation is one of the greatest things a person can do. This is also one way for us to repay our debt in this world.
The success of organ donation programme reflects a society`s triumph and its attitude towards fellow human beings. It is an act of giving, recycling and rebirth. Death is not the end it is a new beginning. We need to understand and accept this philosophy. Walter Scott the famous novelist said - `Death is not the last sleep. It is the final awakening.'