Prevalence and Potential Correlates of Family Refusal to Organ Donation for Brain-Dead Declared Patients: A 12-Year Retrospective Screening Study


Transplantation Proceedings, vol.53, pp.548-554, 2021 (Peer-Reviewed Journal) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 53
  • Publication Date: 2021
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.transproceed.2020.08.015
  • Journal Name: Transplantation Proceedings
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded, Scopus, Academic Search Premier, BIOSIS, CAB Abstracts, EMBASE, MEDLINE, Veterinary Science Database
  • Page Numbers: pp.548-554


© 2020 Elsevier Inc.Background: This study was designed to determine prevalence and potential correlates of family refusal to organ donation for patients declared brain dead thorough a 12-year retrospective data analysis. Methods: Of 111 cases declared brain dead by our hospital within a 12-year period between 2008 and 2019, a total of 82 potentially brain-dead organ donors were included in this retrospective study. Data on sociodemographic characteristics, length of intensive care unit stay, cause of death, decedent's wishes, interview time, family decision, and reasons for refusal were recorded. Results: The rate of family refusal to organ donation was 51.2% and because of religious concerns (64.3%) in most of cases. The likelihood of family consent to organ donation was significantly higher for an adult vs a child (60.0% vs 25.9%, P = .004) and for a schooler and adolescent age vs a younger child (55.6 vs 22.5%, P = .004). Patients who were declared brain dead after nontraumatic intracranial hemorrhage (60.4%) vs encephalitis (18.2%) had higher rates of family consent to organ donation (P = .023). Conclusions: In conclusion, our findings revealed family refusal to organ donation in at least half of cases and higher likelihood of family consent to organ donation depending on age of patient (adult vs children) and cause of death (brain injury vs encephalitis). The religious concerns and distrust in the health care system were the 2 major causes of family refusal, whereas no significant difference was noted across different family refusal reasons in terms of sociodemographic factors, length of intensive care unit stay, awareness of decedent's wishes, or time of family interview.