History Of Transplants Essay

1063 words - 5 pages

You’re 50 years old now. You haven’t taken care of your body as well as you thought you did and now you must go through hundreds of tests to see if you can get that new organ that you need. Would your chances of survival be good if you needed a transplant back in the 1800’s? What about present time? Do you have a chance of living a long life? Does the future truly look brighter for transplants? You’ll learn about your chances of a successful transplant in both the past, present, and future.
What is the history of transplants? No one knows exactly how long people have been transplanting tissue but some of the first information we have is from the 1500’s. The first thing to medical record was ...view middle of the document...

As the success rate continued to grow, doctor’s began to try other organs such as lungs, livers, hearts, and even things like pancreases.
All of the mysteries of blood transfusions were answered in the 1900’s when Karl Landsteiner, an Austrian doctor, discovered blood types. Including that improvement came new laws, new information, and new tests. Doctors began doing multiple organ transplants and even started transferring bone marrow! As technology continued to grow people began to die from rejection. In the 1970’s people proved that Cyclosporine’s the best immunosuppressant that they had. Then, from the 1980’s to the 2000’s, they created new laws and even national holidays (organdonor.gov)!
In the late 20th century, scientists developed a kidney machine that performs dialysis (Wouk 23). Doctors, despite major complications, continued to try liver transplants. After years and years they finally succeeded and were able to transplant the first successful liver (Wouk 24). Times have changed and we’re already in the 21st century! Now, doctors have a whole set of tests that they must do before deciding if it’s safe for their patient to get a transplant (Wouk 28). Once their patient has been cleared, they will have to wait. The person’s name will go onto a waiting list depending on the seriousness of their case. In America -and other places- there is a shortage of organs (Wouk 29, 30, 41-45). Some may wait weeks, months, even years to get what they need be it a kidney, a heart, a liver, etc… When the shipment of your new organ is in, the operation will begin. You’ll get the surgery, take many different pills (Wouk 28), and pray to whatever greater power there is that you’re body doesn’t reject the new organ. Another solution to this problem is to get an artificial organ be it for life or just for your wait. While people have artificial hearts and kidneys, doctors and scientists are still working to develop different organs, enhanced versions, and units with more mobility (Wouk 52, 53).
As mentioned before, doctors and scientists are...

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