In a one-of-its-kind medical case, four people were detected with breast cancers years later they received organs from a common donor.
This unusual case led to the deaths of 3 out of 4 receivers.
In 2007, a fifty-three-year-old organ donor expired due to a stroke. The donor’s liver, heart, kidneys, and lungs were given to 4 patients only after extensive testing.
The tests that were conducted after the death of the donor did not bring to notice any evidence of breast cancer in the donor.
However, of all the four European patients, three have died since because of breast cancer.
The last remaining patient survived the breast cancer through undergoing breast cancer treatments, preventing breast cancers from metastasizing to the remaining body getting their transplanted kidneys removed and then undergoing chemotherapy.
The patient also stopped taking the prescribed immunosuppression medication. Those who undergo organ transplant are required to take the medicine so that their body does not decline the new organ.
According to Dr. Fredrike Bemelman, a professor who teaches nephrology at the University of Amsterdam noted that the situation could be avoided if the transplanted organ was removed.
He said for this case that removal of the transplanted organ and immunity restoration can induce complete remission.
However, the research authors stress that the case is extremely rare and so, people should not be tensed about whether the transplanted organ is safe. According to Bamelman, this was the first such incident in her career of 20 years in transplantation research.
She, however, added that there is a small amount of risk with all organ transplantation procedures. Moreover, she noted that such small risks should not deviate anyone going for a transplant.
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