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Narratives: an essential tool for evaluating living kidney donations



Narratives: an essential tool for evaluating living kidney donations



Medicine Health Care and Philosophy 15(2): 181-194



Norway's living kidney donation-rate is among the highest in the world (36 per million). According to questionnaire-results, donors enjoy better than average health, presumably due to the strict medical criteria for being allowed to donate and life long medical follow up. However, in recent years international studies have cast doubt on the predominantly positive picture of donors and recipients, particularly regarding psychological aspects of transplantation surgery and donor evalutation. Findings in this study derive from anthropological fieldwork lasting 36 months at three university hospitals in the Oslo-basin. 18 end stage kidney disease patients and their potential donors were recruited opportunistically and interviewed (separately) in three or more semi-structured conversations during the evaluation process and after transplantation. 3 cases are discussed in detail. Notes were transcribed and analysed according to narrative theory. Focus was to explore the content of donors' and recipients' pre- and post-transplantation narratives and to examine whether these accounts warrant a need for more comprehensive psychological assessment than is current practice in Norway. Donor- and recipient-narratives are well suited as a tool to improve living kidney donation-decisions. The material indicates a need to offer psychological care to LKD-partners, before and after transplantation.

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Accession: 036176409

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 21826514

DOI: 10.1007/s11019-011-9337-9


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