Friday, October 21, 2011

Liver Transplant Donor Application Update

I have some important news to share.  All blood types can now apply to be a living liver donor towards our baby.  Previously only B or O could apply, and they are now opening it up to A and AB donors.  Positive/negative blood type does not matter. This is called "ABO incompatible matching", and is not typically done.  Toronto has done it with adults, but never with children. 

When we met with the transplant team a couple of weeks ago, they had mentioned that they were going to add in the possibility of using ABO incompatible livers from cadavers if they came in to bring up the odds of finding a liver.  This is only done in rare cases.  Our next question to them automatically became, "If you are willing to do that, what about incompatible blood type living donors?"  They mentioned that they had not done this at Sick Kids before, but would talk it over with the living donor co-ordinators at Toronto General as well as the main surgeon (who was in surgery during our last meeting.)

I received an email today saying that it had been approved, and if we knew of anyone with the other blood types who would be interested in applying that they could.  Healthy, ages 18-60, in normal weight range. 

This is a link to the Liver Donation Manual.  There are a few things in it that don't apply to our situation - like the fact that normally they don't look at potential donors until the person is on the transplant list.  Since baby will be on the list immediately after birth, they are looking at the possibilities of screening donors now.  It's a very detailed document about the procedure!

Finally, here is a link to the Donor Health History Application Form. Where it asks for the recipients name, we are using "Baby Boy Babcock" for now, and he will be at Sick Kids. If you need any more info let me know, and I'll give you the number for the living donor transplant co-ordinator at Toronto General Hospital who looks after all this, and answers questions for those considering the process.

Applications get sent to:

Toronto General Hospital
Living Donor Assessment Office
585 University Avenue
NCSB-12C 1217
Toronto, ON M5G 2N2
Fax 416-340-3097

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