A 9-day-old saves a life by donating her kidney after brain death

Updated 2017-08-02 14:00:44 CGTN
China Daily Photo

China Daily Photo

An 8-months-old baby, nearly at the death's doorsteps, luckily survived after a kidney transplantation on July 26. Years later, he may cherish the gift given by an infant who had only been in the world for 9 days.

The infant died of brain death in July. She became the youngest ever organ donor in Kunming, capital of southwest China's Yunnan Province.

On July 17, a woman surnamed Zuo, had an emergent cesarean operation over placental abruption in Kunming's Maternal and Child Health Hospital, and gave a birth to a female weighed 2,670 grams. However, as the infant was born with severe asphyxia, she remained in coma for four days even after continuous efforts to save her life.

Zuo and her husband have been expecting for a joyful life, as the new-born girl was the family's second child.

On the seventh day after her birth, the infant was diagnosed as brain dead.

"She is my child, even if she has only been in the world for a very short time," said Zuo's husband. "I hope her organ can save other's life. We would be glad to see that."

The infant's grandmother could not help sobbing through the process for signing the donation documents, but the elderly women granted the donation after being told of the miserable story of the 8-months-old baby boy. The infant's mother also authorized the donation through written commitment.

On July 26, the infant's heartbeat stopped, after the breathing machined was removed in the morning. One of her kidney, taken after two hours' operation, was at once air lifted to Wuhan, central China's Hubei Province. On the same night, the 8-months-old boy received the kidney through a transplantation operation that lasted seven hours.

"I was very much touched, as I know losing a baby is a huge strike to a family," said Li Ke, an officer from Red Cross China. "At this tough time, they can still give a helping hand to others, which is admirable indeed."

According surgeon Zhao Yongheng, the kidney well matched the receiver and it has started functioning in his body.

Currently, there are over 300,000 patients in urgent need of organ transplants in China every year, but only 10,000 such operations were carried out yearly, according to Changjiang News. It indicated China is one of countries with the lowest organ donation rate, with only 0.6 out of every 1 million people will to make organ donations.

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