Organs and their functions. Transplantable Organs . Heart Lungs(2) Liver Kidneys (2) Pancreas Small bowel. Kidneys. Functions Cleans & filters the blood Helps to regulate: Blood pressure Red blood cells Bone calcium Kidney Disease Cancer, alcohol, infection, high blood pressure.
Cleans & filters the blood
Helps to regulate:
Red blood cells
Cancer, alcohol, infection, high blood pressure
Functions:Acts as a store
Breaks down drugs
Produces clotting factors
Hepatitis, cancer, autoimmune disease, overdose, alcohol
Acts as a pump to circulate the blood around the body
Congenital, viral, lifestyle.
Congenital, viral, lifestyle.
Months to live – need a transplant
Produces enzymes to help digestion and hormones to maintain normal levels of sugar in the blood.
Congenital, alcohol, diabetes
In the United Kingdom two key laws govern organ donation and transplantation:
The Human Tissue (Scotland) Act 2006;
The Human Tissue Act 2004. (England, Wales and Northern Ireland)
The Human Tissue (Scotland) Act 2006 sets out the legal framework under which people can express their wish to leave parts of their body (organs and tissue) so that these can be used for transplantation after their death.
Any adult, or child aged 12 and over, who is able to make their own decisions, can give permission for their organs or tissue to be donated.
If you want to donate organs or tissue, this will be done in preference to any other requests which are made, for example leaving you body to medical science.
A person’s own decision is the most important thing. A relative does not have the right to change this decision after the person has died.
Children under the age of 12 cannot give permission themselves. If a child under the age of 12 dies, only their parent or guardian can give permission for their organs or tissue to be donated.The Human Tissue (Scotland) Act 2006
At present, a person must express their wish to be a donor. This system is commonly known as ‘opt-in’.
A person who wishes to ‘opt-in’ puts his/her name on the NHS Organ Donor Register, maintained by NHS Blood and Transplant.
This is a national, confidential list of people who are willing to become donors after their death.
It can be quickly accessed by donor transplant co-ordinators or other healthcare professionals to see whether an individual has expressed willingness to be an organ donor.
Joining the NHS Organ Donor Register, online at
Telephone 0300 123 23 23
Telling their closest relatives or friends
Carrying a Donor Card
Writing it in a letter or document such as a willExpressing wishes
The law gives further guidance and specifies a ‘hierarchy’ of relatives in the order in which the healthcare professional is expected to approach them:
Spouse or civil partner; Living with the person as husband/wife or in a relationship which has the characteristics of civil partners for a period of not less than 6 months;
Brother or sister;
Uncle or aunt;
Niece or nephew;
Friend of longstanding.What happens if a persons wishes are unknown?
• Ask someone lower down if an individual does not wish to or is unable to decide.
• Ask someone lower down where it is not reasonably practicable to discuss with the highest ranking relative (such as when the person is un-contactable e.g. flying home as their relative is gravely ill).What happens if a persons wishes are unknown?