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Dossow, Vera von; Costa, Joseph; D'Ovidio, Frank; Marczin, Nandor (2017): Worldwide trends in heart and lung transplantation: Guarding the most precious gift ever. In: Best Practice & Research-Clinical Anaesthesiology, Vol. 31, No. 2: pp. 141-152
Full text not available from 'Open Access LMU'.

Abstract

Transplantation is sadly a therapy to die for. The survival of a recipient with end-stage heart or lung disease requires the demise of a human being through brain death or cessation of circulation, with the noblest final act of offering one's organs to another. However, transplantation is constrained by severe hemodynamic, regulatory, inflammatory, and metabolic stresses in the donor, rendering the majority of offered organs unsuitable for transplantation. Coupled with our inability to acquire exact molecular and cellular information and missed opportunities for effectively modulating deteriorations of donors and allografts, anesthesia and critical care contributes to ongoing organ shortages. Progress is made with improving waiting lists by bridging patients for transplantation using mechanical support. However, this represents more complex recipients, higher risk transplant operations, and increased resource utilization. The advent of ex vivo perfusion allows implementing novel diagnostic and therapeutic strategies with real potential of reconditioning less ideal organs. This review advocates a paradigm change in critical care management of the potential donor for improving retrieval practices and for more intellectual involvement of our specialties in organ preservation, ex vivo evaluation and reconditioning, and the need for great advancement in our efficiency in converting unacceptable allografts to suitable donor organs.