Friday, 23 March 2018

Living Kidney Donors & Gender: Women Donate, Men Receive

"Instead of simply congratulating women on their altruism, we need to ask about possible reasons for the existing gender imbalance and check it for matters of fairness and undue pressure on a vulnerable group."

According to a report published in 2002, male family members are less likely to donate than their female counterparts. A large Canadian transplant centre found that among those who were acceptable for donation, 36% of wives donated versus 6.5% of husbands. In Germany, women were twice as likely to donate to their husbands, or: men were more reluctant to donate to their wives  (Dobson, 2002). A comparison between female and male kidney donors at a hospital in Delhi shows that in 2012 82% were female and 18% male, in 2015 75% were female and 25% male. When it comes to recipients, men clearly outnumber women. In 2012, 93% of kidney recipients were male and 7% were female, in 2015 79% were male and 21% female (via). The Swiss Organ Living Donor Health Registry analysed data from 1993 to 2003 and came to the conclusion that 65% of kidney donors were female and 64% of recipients were male (Thiel, Nolte & Tsinalis, 2005). Gender disparities were also shown in an analysis of living-donor kidney transplants carried out from 1987 to 2014 in England: 54.7% of donors were women, 39.4% of women were recipients. Differences among ethnic groups could be observed (Peracha, Hayer & Sharif, 2016). Italy is no exception, recipients are males, donors are females (Puoti et al., 2016).
"More than half of living donors are female, females are less likely than males to be on the organ transplant waiting list among chronic kidney failure patients, and wait-listed females are less likely to recieve either a cadaveric or living renal transplant. This disparity not only exists among spouses, in which female-to-male donation rates represent 68-73% of cases, but also between biological relatives, with more mothers, daughters and sisters donating and more fathers, sons and brothers receiving kidney allografts."
Kayler et al. (2003)
- - - - - - - -
- Dobson, R. (2002). More women than men become living organ donors, online
- Kayler, L. K., Rasmussen, C. S., Dykstra, D. M., Ojo, A.O., Port, F.K., Wolfe, R. A. & Merion, R.M. (2003). Gender Imbalance and Outcomes in Living Donor Renal Transplantation in The United States. American Journal of Transplantation, 3, 452-458.
- Peracha, J., Hayer, M.K. & Sharif, A. (2016). Gender Disparity in Living-Donor Kidney Transplant Among Minority Ethnic Groups. Experimental and Clinical Transplantation, 14(2), 139-145.
- Puoti, F., Ricci, A., Nanni-Costa, A., Ricciardi, W., Malorni, W. & Ortona, E. (2016). Organ transplantation and gender differences: a paradigmatic example of intertwining between biological and sociocultural determinants. Biology of Sex Differences, 7, online
- Thiel, G.T., Nolte, C. & Tsinalis, D. (2005). Gender Imbalance in Living Kidney Donation in Switzerland. Transplantation Proceedings, 37(2), 592-594.
- photograph by Nina Leen (1909-1995) via