Experience With Anencephalic Infants as Prospective Organ Donors
Peabody, Joyce L.
Emery, Janet R.
New England Journal of Medicine. 1989 Aug 10; 321(6): 344-350.
The authors modified the care of 12 live-born anencephalic infants for one week with the long-term goal of increasing the number of organs for transplantation into newborns. Six infants received resuscitation and intensive care from birth, and an examination for the occurrence of total brain death was performed every 12 hours. Six infants received customary comfort care until signs of imminent death developed. Then they were resuscitated and examined for the occurrence of brain death after they stabilized. Only one infant from each group met the criteria for whole-brain death within one week. When organ function was maintained through intensive care, dying was prolonged. When intensive care was delayed until death seemed imminent, most organs were not suitable for transplantation. The authors conclude that it is rarely feasible to procure solid organs from anencephalic infants with current legal restrictions. (KIE abstract)
Anencephaly; Body Parts and Fluids; Brain; Brain Death; Brain Pathology; Death; Determination of Death; Donors; Evaluation; Human Experimentation; Infants; Legal Aspects; Life; Newborns; Nontherapeutic Research; Organ Donation; Organ Donors; Patient Care; Prolongation of Life; Research; Resuscitation; Resuscitation Orders; Tissue Donation; Transplantation;
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