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Currently, 14,407 people in the U.S. await life-saving liver transplants. In our region alone, 471 people are on the waiting list for a liver transplant.
About the Liver
The liver is the largest organ in the body. It is responsible for crucial functions such as the breakdown of harmful substances in our blood and the production of bile that aids in digestion.
Liver failure can be caused by viral infections, genetic disorders or even alcoholism. These liver diseases lead to cirrhosis, which creates scar tissue that blocks the flow of blood and thus impedes the liver's functions.
Most liver transplants involve transplanting the entire liver, where the diseased liver is removed and replaced with a healthy one. But it is possible to transplant part of a liver, as the organ can regenerate itself within the body. This is how it is possible for people to be living liver donors, as both the transplanted lobe and the donor’s lobe will grow in their respective bodies.
- The average patient must wait 11 months for a liver transplant.
- A liver donated by an adult can often be split and transplanted into two people.
The Interactive Body
Explore the Interactive Body to learn about organs and tissues needed for others awaiting transplants.
Register to Be a Donor
It’s easy to add the donor designation to your driver's license or state I.D. card. In Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware. Sign up today!
Joe thought his days of playing soccer were over when he was diagnosed with heart disease and needed a life-saving heart transplant to survive. Now, at 18, he is back on the field and living up to his nickname "The Blur" all thanks to his hero, an organ donor.
Gift of Life works tirelessly to rewrite the stories for the more than 5,600 people in our region waiting for their second chance at life. The gift of organ and tissue donation truly can change someone's life and rewrite their story. How has the Gift of Life rewritten your story? Share with us.