The importance of tissue and cornea or eye donation is frequently overlooked and it's significance in many medical treatment options is often not recognized by the public. The following statistics help to demonstrate the need and importance of tissue donation and transplantation.
Approximately 450,000 Americans will need tissue transplants this year to improve or even save their lives.
Although an estimated 45,000 corneas will be transplanted to restore sight, more than 5,000 people will still be waiting for an available cornea at the end of the year.
About 100,000 skin grafts will be performed. However, more might have occurred if human donor skin had been available when it was needed.
More than 300,000 bone grafts will be used in the treatment of degenerative bone diseases, malignancies, and traumatic injuries often sparing damaged limbs from amputation.
Other tissue needs include heart valves, and venous and connective grafts. Heart valves are frequently utilized in pediatric surgeries, even in infants.
One donor may benefit 50 or more individuals needing various types of transplantable tissues.
More important than signing a donor card is to make an informed decision and “SHARE YOUR DECISION WITH YOUR FAMILY.” Your family members are the ones who will be offered the option of donation and they will benefit from knowing your wishes.