Critical care of the potential organ donor.
ABSTRACT Organ transplantation represents one of the great success stories of 20th century medicine. However, its continued success is greatly limited by the shortage of donor organs. This has led to an increased focus within the critical care community on optimal identification and management of the potential organ donor. The multi-organ donor can represent one of the most complex intensive care patients, with numerous competing physiological priorities. However, appropriate management of the donor not only increases the number of organs that can be successfully donated but has long-term implications for the outcomes of multiple recipients. This review outlines current understandings of the physiological derangements seen in the organ donor and evaluates the available evidence for management strategies designed to optimize donation potential and organ recovery. Finally, emerging management strategies for the potential donor are discussed within the current ethical and legal frameworks permitting donation after both brain and circulatory death.
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ABSTRACT: Brain death is associated with dramatic and serious pathophysiologic changes that adversely affect both the quantity and quality of organs available for transplant. To fully optimise the donor pool necessitates a more complete understanding of the underlying pathophysiology of organ dysfunction associated with transplantation. These injurious processes are initially triggered by catastrophic brain injury and are further enhanced during both brain death and graft transplantation. The activated inflammatory systems then contribute to graft dysfunction in the recipient. Inflammatory mediators drive this process in concert with the innate and adaptive immune systems. Activation of deleterious immunological pathways in organ grafts occurs, priming them for further inflammation after engraftment. Finally, posttransplantation ischaemia reperfusion injury leads to further generation of inflammatory mediators and consequent activation of the recipient's immune system. Ongoing research has identified key mediators that contribute to the inflammatory milieu inherent in brain dead organ donation. This has seen the development of novel therapies that directly target the inflammatory cascade.Journal of Transplantation 01/2013; 2013:521369.
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ABSTRACT: This article reviews current guidelines for death by neurologic criteria and addresses topics relevant to the determination of brain death in the intensive care unit. The history of brain death as a concept leads into a discussion of the evolution of practice parameters, focusing on the most recent 2010 update from the American Academy of Neurology and the practice variability that exists worldwide. Proper transition from brain death determination to possible organ donation is reviewed. This review concludes with a discussion regarding ethical and religious concerns and suggestions on how families of patients who may be brain dead might be optimally approached.Neurosurgery clinics of North America 07/2013; 24(3):469-82. · 1.73 Impact Factor