WEDNESDAY, Sept. 21 (HealthDay News) -- More thorough donor
screening and more advanced organ testing to help protect
transplant patients from infectious diseases are recommended in a
draft of an updated organ transplant guideline released Wednesday
by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The goal of the new guideline is to reduce infections such as
HIV (the virus that causes AIDS), hepatitis B virus (HBV), and
hepatitis C virus (HCV). Screening is already done for HIV, but HBV
and HCV should be added to the screening process, the CDC said.
From 2007 to 2010, the CDC was involved in more than 200
investigations of suspected, unexpected transmission of HIV,
hepatitis B and hepatitis C through transplants. In some of the
confirmed cases, the transplant recipient died due to the
The existing guideline was created in 1994. Other major proposed
changes to the guideline include updated and more sensitive tests
for donor organs, and a revised set of donor risk factors that can
help doctors get a better idea of possible problems with donors'
The new draft guideline focuses on organ safety because the U.S.
Food and Drug Administration has already implemented tighter
regulations for tissue and semen donors.
"Our first priority must be patient safety. These recommendations will save lives and reduce unintended disease in organ recipients," Dr. Matthew J. Kuehnert, director of the CDC's Office of Blood, Organ and Other Tissue Safety Office, said in a CDC news release. "The guideline will help patients and their doctors have information they need to fully weigh risks and benefits of transplanting a particular organ."
The Draft 2011 Public Health Service Guideline for Reducing
Transmission of HIV, HBV, and HCV through Solid Organ
Transplantation can be found at www.regulations.gov. The
review-and-comment period will last 60 days.
The United Network for Organ Sharing has more about