• Kyodo


Two organs donated from a brain-dead woman in her 60s in Hakodate, Hokkaido, were success fully transplanted to two women at hospitals in Kyoto and Sapporo between Sunday and early Monday in Japan’s ninth set of organ transplant operations, doctors said.

Doctors at Kyoto University Hospital completed the transplant of the woman’s liver shortly before 2 a.m. Monday to a woman in her 50s from Saga Prefecture in an operation that lasted about 111/2 hours.

Koichi Tanaka, the doctor who conducted the operation, said he was pleased to see the organ successfully transplanted to the patient, who had lost physical strength.

The recipient was suffering from primary sclerosing cholangitis, a chronic inflammation and fibrosis of all bile ducts.

A kidney was earlier transplanted to another woman from Hokkaido at a municipal hospital in Sapporo on Sunday.

The recipient, who is in her 40s, suffered from chronic glomerulonephritis, a progressive kidney inflammation usually resulting in permanent kidney failure.

The donor, who suffered a subarachnoid hemorrhage, was legally pronounced brain-dead Saturday evening at a municipal hospital in Hakodate. She had indicated on an organ-donor card her willingness to donate her organs in the event of brain death, and her family respected her wishes.

The woman’s other organs — heart and lungs — were deemed medically unsuitable for transplantation, and she had already donated her other kidney to a family member, according to transplant coordinators.

Under the Organ Transplant Law, which took effect in 1997, organs can be extracted from people officially declared brain-dead on condition that they express their willingness on a donor card and indicate the organs they wish to donate. Family members must agree to the transplant operations.

Since the operations were legalized in Japan, a total of 30 people have received organs in eight previous transplant cases.

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