Metas de Enfermería

Metas de Enfermería

ABRIL 2009 N° 3 Volumen 12

Maintenance of brain-dead multi-organ potential donors

Section: Hands on

How to quote

López Díaz C. Mantenimiento del donante potencial multiorgánico en muerte encefálica. Metas de Enferm abr 2009; 12(3): 10-16


Cristina López Díaz


Diplomada en Enfermería. Unidad de Cuidados Intensivos del Hospital Universitario de Salamanca.

Contact address

C/ Crespo Rascón, 12-22, 4º Q. 37002 Salamanca

Contact email: cristinalopezd@yahoo.es


Adequate maintenance of the multi-organ potential donor encompasses two important aspects: firstly, avoiding the loss of the donor due to irreversible arrest before he/she has been taken to the operating room to initiate organ extraction, and secondly, ensuring the quality of the donor’s haemodynamic maintenance given that it is inversely proportional to morbimortality of the transplanted organ, thus increasing the viability of the organs that will be transplanted.
Nursing care is essential to achieve the objective of providing optimal maintenance of the multi-organ potential donor.
This work aims to describe the experience of an intensive care unit in terms of the maintenance of potential donors and the viability of obtained organs, as well as to present the nursing care plan of the patients with brain death.
Between 2003 and 2007, 77 brain deaths (BD) occurred, from which 47 real donations (68%) were obtained; ischemic or hemorrhagic cerebrovascular accidents (CVA) were the cause of brain death in 70% of cases.  Not all organs obtained were transplanted and only one patient was lost due to irreversible arrest.
The nursing care plan presented proposes the nurse’s collaboration in the donor’s maintenance, and is based on real case problems and potential complications with the corresponding prevention, early detection and treatment interventions.  This intervention protocol enables criteria unification and provision of quality healthcare.   


organ transplant; donor; brain death; organ donor careintensive care

Versión en Español


Mantenimiento del donante potencial multiorgánico en muerte encefálica