Psychiatric disorders: Are they an absolute contraindication to living donation?

Anthony A. Rowley, Barry A. Hong, Susan Martin, Linda Jones, Anitha Vijayan, Surendra Shenoy, Martin Jendrisak

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Little information has been published about the suitability of candidates for living organ donation who have a past or current psychiatric diagnosis. A retrospective review of 445 living donor kidney transplants performed at Barnes-Jewish Hospital's transplant center from 1995 to 2005 disclosed 42 donor candidates with such a history, prompting detailed psychological evaluation. Although 41 candidates (10% of the donor pool) met criteria for 1 or more psychiatric diagnoses, none were considered psychologically unfit for donation. Of these, 22 candidates underwent kidney donation without medical or surgical complications and without development of subsequent active psychological problems. Several donors maintained long-term contact up to 12 years to report good health and a high degree of satisfaction with the decision to donate. This experience suggests that for donor candidates with a psychiatric diagnosis, formal psychiatric evaluation to evaluate current mental health stability is warranted. Stable individuals, on or off therapy, can be considered fit to donate with expected short- and long-term outcome prognoses similar to those for the general population.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)128-131
Number of pages4
JournalProgress in Transplantation
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 1 2009


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