Questions and answers about organ donation

Words and concepts

Donation rate

The number of donors in a country is divided by the total county population on the equation of ‘per million inhabitants’ (PMI).



Transplantation means to receive an organ. We say that an organ is ‘transplanted’ when it is operated in a patient. We could also say that the patient ‘is transplanted’ as they have ‘received an organ’.


Ischemic time

The time it takes to surgically remove an organ from a donor until it is transplanted to the recipient. The ischemic time should be as short as possible. Different organs have different maximal ischemitid and if this time elapses then the organ cannot be used.

  • Heart – 4 hours
  • Lungs – 6 hours
  • Liver – 12 hours
  • Pancreas – 12 hours
  • Kidney – 24-46 hours


By this we mean that an organ is transferred from one person to another. To donate means to give away an organ.


Dialysis/ hemodialysis

Treatment with an artificial kidney whereby blood is cleansed of toxins: this process is normally carried out in hospitals.


Cerebral angiography

An X-ray examination of the brain, by injecting contrast dye: this is used to examine blood circulation to the brain and confirm death.


Family donation

This term is used when a living person gives one of their kidneys to a close relative i.e. a family donation from a living donor. Norway is among the countries in the world that performs the most kidneys transplants from living donors in relation to population. This process gives good results for both giver and receiver. The Norwegian Government has indicated that kidney donation from living donors should be held at 40%.