After the Sale: How’s the Donor?

One of the least publicized features of organ transplantation is when the donor is still living and aspires for quality life much life his/her beneficiaries. The studies done by Scheper-Hughes include the repercussions of those who chose to “donate” or sell their body parts, the most common of which is the donation of kidneys. The trend is negative with the donors experiencing harmful bearing on their health and overall physical condition.

In the words of Baruch “Many lose their jobs because they are unable to continue working at their jobs after transplant and many donors become afraid to return to work because of a fear of injuring their remaining kidney. Donors complain of health problems such as palpitation, tremors, chest-pain, backache, nervousness and fatigue. Depression and anxiety are very common in donors after donation. Suicide is a frequent problem. Social isolation and marital conflict increased.

Financial problems increased” (Baruch, 2005 in Scheper-Hughes, 2000). Literature shows that as recent as 2005, countries such as Sweden, Norway, Belgium, Brazil, Greece, Finland, Italy, Spain, France and Austria opted to get into the issues and problems of organ trafficking by legislature by endorsing the presumed consent laws (Watkins 2005 in Jensen, 2000). More countries should make concerted effort into this dilemma considering that the Internet has become an “enabler” to these global operations.

For instance, in what Scheper-Hughes illustrated in her study focusing on Brazil, the seemingly innocent advertisement offering “any organ of which I have two and the removal of which will not cause my immediate demise” is sure to attract those patients awaiting and looking for organ donors (Batchelder, Tim. 2005. In Nancy Scheper-Scheper-Hughes, 2000). Locally produced documentaries in the Philippines even featured the sale of these kidneys like “hotcakes’ at the same time breaking into a syndicate where the kidney sellers were promised huge payments which eventually turned out to be a ruse.

Many fell into the trap because of economic deprivations only to be duped by middle men and doctors up for grabs. VI. Conclusion The awareness of the increasing occurrence of the global organ trade disables to a certain degree, those who are and are attempting to perpetuate the unethical, humanly despicable pattern. People of this kind who pursue the malpractice do so, purely for money. There are the legitimate ones decently making proper transactions using the proper channels, i. e. waiting for relatives making the donations of their loved one’s body parts without the money exchange.

They abide by proper ethical guidelines. The abuses made have become epidemic in proportion if the facts are straight. Exposes made through documentaries and publications, as well as researches made such as this, help disseminate information about the evil behind the widespread organ trading. When people start to become aware of the dark side of organ harvesting, they start to care. Poverty of people, sometimes, is a factor why they get into something that costs more than the cash they have exchanged for it: A kidney for money.

Why greed in doctors has brought them to such a contemptible practice is part of the makeup of “human complexities” which no human being can comprehend but still, perhaps, no one is immune to the lure of financial gain even if it means a sacrifice of the conscience. Perhaps an incorporation of the subject of ethics in the curriculum of medicine should be dealt with lengthily and comprehensively throughout the duration of the medical profession’s preparations. I wish I can do more than read, study and write about this medical problem.

I might be given a lot of chances, though, to have my own platform to present an advocacy, and this paper is perhaps one very strong and persuasive thesis on which I can mount and defend upon. Nevertheless, it will not be such an easy task as I have proven while making this paper. If I were to travel to countries like Brazil, Thailand or the Philippines, the question for me will be: “Will I be able to truly take time, expend energy, and financial resources to campaign for awareness among the poor to prevent them from such exchanges?

” If I can do that, the next question I should be ready to answer will be: “Am I prepared to accept if not one person will be convinced? ” Probably, I will still go ahead and do the lonely task, or most likely, I’ll quit. Notwithstanding, the harvesting of organs issue should not just be left to “authorities. ” One way or another, everyone’s seemingly sheltered life will be affected by somebody’s wrong decision regarding such an important matter as donating or selling one’s body parts.

If you have undergone a major surgical operation in the past, one which subjected you to general anesthesia, you would not know for life what had transpired inside that operating room. You might be a victim already. How do you know if you still have your kidneys intact? Knowing all these information, we can only hope for better hospitals in our communities.


1. Ballard, Dustin. 2000. Presumed Consent in Organ Donation. Bioethics on NBC. http://www. bioethics. net/articles. php? viewCat=7&articleId=134. 2. Baruch, Jay. 2005. Prisoners and Donation. Medicine and Health Rhode Island. Accessed in www. findarticles. com

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