+ Site Statistics
+ Search Articles
+ PDF Full Text Service
How our service works
Request PDF Full Text
+ Follow Us
Follow on Facebook
Follow on Twitter
Follow on LinkedIn
+ Subscribe to Site Feeds
Most Shared
PDF Full Text
+ Translate
+ Recently Requested

How nurses shift from care of a brain-injured patient to maintenance of a brain-dead organ donor

How nurses shift from care of a brain-injured patient to maintenance of a brain-dead organ donor

American Journal of Critical Care 10(5): 306-312

The responsibility of obtaining organs for transplantation rests partly on critical care nurses. How nurses balance care of critically ill, brain-injured patients with the professional responsibility to procure organs is a question of ethical and clinical importance. To describe the experiences of critical care nurses in making the shift from caring for a brain-injured patient identified as a potential organ donor to maintaining a brain-dead body. An interpretive, phenomenological design was used. In 2 trauma centers, 9 critical care nurses were interviewed, and 2 of the 9 nurses were observed. Identification of potential organ donors is made under conditions of prognostic ambiguity. The transition from brain injury to brain death is a period of instability in which the critical care team must decide quickly whether to resuscitate a patient in order to procure organs. After a patient is brain dead, critical care nurses' relationship with and responsibility toward the patient change. The process of identifying potential organ donors and holding open the tentative possibility of organ procurement illustrates the practical difficulties of early referral of potential donors to organ procurement organizations. Early referral to an organ procurement organization implies a commitment to organ procurement that some nurses may hesitate to make because such a commitment changes their relationship with a brain-injured patient.

Please choose payment method:

(PDF emailed within 1 workday: $29.90)

Accession: 046280454

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 11548563

Related references

Intensive care nurses' experiences of caring for brain dead organ donor patients. Journal of Clinical Nursing 10(1): 132-139, 2001

The medical-nursing team specialized in the maintenance of the brain-dead heart-beating organ donor exclusively dedicated to caring for the donor reduces donor loss from asystolia to zero. Transplantation Proceedings 34(1): 20-22, 2002

Organ donation from a brain-dead patient. Donor criteria, organ-preserving therapy and discussion with the relatives. Deutsche Medizinische Wochenschrift 114(25): 998-1002, 1989

Care of the brain-dead organ donor. Current Anaesthesia & Critical Care 18(5-6): 284-294, 2007

Treatment of the brain-dead patient/organ donor. Minerva Anestesiologica 59(10 Suppl 3): 91-95, 1993

Critical care management of the brain-dead organ donor. Current Opinion in Organ Transplantation 7(1): 70-75, 2002

Intensive care and intraoperative management of the brain-dead organ donor. Transplantation Proceedings 19(4 Suppl 3): 21-25, 1987

Thyroid Hormone Replacement in Brain-Dead Organ Donor: Should it Be Standard of Care or Is it Still too Soon to Tell?. Journal of Cardiothoracic and Vascular Anesthesia 33(6): 1636-1638, 2019

The brain-dead patient or a flower in the vase? The emergency department approach to the preservation of the organ donor. European Journal of Emergency Medicine 10(1): 52-57, 2003

The physiological changes associated with brain death--current concepts and implications for treatment of the brain dead organ donor. Anaesthesia and Intensive Care 23(1): 26-36, 1995

Nursing and care of the brain-dead patient until organ removal. Osterreichische Krankenpflegezeitschrift 48(11): 22-25, 1995

Codman Award paper--the experience of intensive care unit nurses providing care to the brain dead patient. Axone 12(1): 18-22, 1990

Organ preservation in a brain dead patient: information support for neurocritical care protocol development. Journal of the Medical Library Association 95(3): 238-245, 2007

Management of the brain-dead organ donor. Saudi Journal of Kidney Diseases and Transplantation 8(1): 21-31, 1997

The first organ transplant from a brain-dead donor. Neurology 66(3): 460, 2006