Wednesday, February 27, 2008
Donation after cardiac death and the LA story
On a winter night in 2006, a disabled and brain damaged man named Ruben Navarro was wheeled into an operating room at a hospital here. By most accounts, Mr. Navarro, 25, was near death, and doctors hoped that he might sustain other lives by donating his kidneys and liver.
But what happened to Mr. Navarro quickly went from the potentially life-saving to what law enforcement officials say was criminal. In what transplant experts believe is the first such case in the country, prosecutors have charged the surgeon, Dr. Hootan C. Roozrokh, with prescribing excessive and improper doses of drugs, apparently in an attempt to hasten Mr. Navarro’s death to retrieve his organs sooner.
A preliminary hearing begins here on Wednesday, with Dr. Roozrokh facing three felony counts relating to Mr. Navarro’s treatment as a donor. At the heart of the case is whether Dr. Roozrokh, who studied at a transplant fellowship program at the Stanford University School of Medicine, was pursuing organs at any cost or had become entangled in a web of misunderstanding about a lesser-used harvesting technique known as “donation after cardiac death.”
Sunday, February 24, 2008
Organ donation, transplant discussed on NPR
Given what they were trying to do with this piece, there probably wasn't time to portray the personal impact of donating and receiving, convey some of the statistics about the various waiting lists, provide a brief overview of some of the evolving strategies for increasing organ yields, AND discuss some of the ethically troubling developments in this field. For the darker side of donation, you'll have to look elsewhere (here, here, and here).