You’ll be contacted when a organ is available. If your new organ is from a living donor, both you and the donor will be in surgery at the same time. One team of surgeons will remove the organ from the donor, while another prepares you to receive the donated organ.
If your new organ is from a person who has recently died, your surgery starts when it arrives at the hospital and the results of the cross-match test, described above, are negative (satisfactory).
The surgery can take from 3 to 4 hours or more. You will be given general anesthesia.
A Note on Deceased Organ Procurement
When a deceased organ becomes available, a team of surgeons and anesthesiologists removes it from the donor. Although the donor is brain dead, this procedure is treated like any other operation using standard surgical practices and sterile techniques. When the operation is complete and the incisions are closed, the donor’s body is prepared for funeral or cremation. Organ procurement surgery respects the body and an open casket funeral is possible if desired.