Organ transplantation is a real lifesaver for people who suffer from organ failure. If the surgical procedure becomes a success, it certainly puts the life of the patient on an extended lease. Pretty amazing, right?
However, not all bodies react similarly to an organ transplant. The surgery carries risks and dangers to the recipient, including organ rejection. This might bring you to question, can you continue living with an organ from another body?
In a recent YouTube video uploaded by Life Noggin, a quite similar thing was questioned. Can you survive with another person’s heart?
As mentioned above, due to the possibility of organ rejection, not all humans can live with the heart of someone else. But why do our bodies reject organs from other people?
Apparently, the body’s immune system typically reacts to antigens contained in foreign tissues. How it will respond will depend on the likeness of the new organ to the recipient’s organ.
This is because the immune system acts as the body’s protection against harmful substances such as germs, poisons and even cancer cells. When it cannot recognize the antigen coating the tissues of the new organ, it sees the tissues as foreign objects. Hence, its first response is to attack. When this happens, transplant rejection occurs.
Therefore, doctors do their best to find the best match for the patient receiving the organ. They look for donors with the closest or similar antigens to the recipient. The more identical the antigens are, the lesser the chance of organ rejection.
It is important to note, however, that no two people have exactly the same tissue antigens. Unless, of course, they are identical twins.
Meanwhile, another medical intervention that doctors perform to help prevent organ rejection is the administration of medicines that can suppress a person’s immune system. This way, it’s highly likely for the immune system to accept the foreign antigens. As a result, it won’t destroy the tissues and the organ transplant will be successful.
Go to the next page to see the video.