We each have the potential to save or dramatically improve the lives of others through organ and tissue donation. In some cases this can even happen during the lifetime of the donor.
The majority of donor organs come from those who have died. This is called deceased donation. By registering as organ and tissue donors, we can ensure that they will give someone else a second chance at life once we no longer need them. The families of deceased donors often experience significant comfort from knowing that their loved one has left such an incredible legacy to others.
When organs are given by donors during their lifetime it is called living donation. Kidney transplants often come from family members, friends or anonymous donors whose blood group and tissue type closely match the patient. In a small amount of cases, sections of livers or lungs can be donated by family members to save the lives of a relative. A kidney donation that is made to save the life of an anonymous stranger is called altruistic donation.