‘Cancer scare’ involving transplant recipients ruled out

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October 27, 2010 16:50
1 minute read.

No signs of cancer have been found in a pancreas removed from a woman who donated five organs (lungs, kidneys and a liver) to four people two weeks ago, even though it had originally been feared that the pancreas had signs of a tumor.

The Health Ministry announced on Wednesday that after sending tissue samples to pathologists at the Rambam Medical Center in Haifa, Hadassah University Medical Center in Jerusalem’s Ein Kerem and Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, no evidence of cancer were found; there were only microscopic signs of pre-cancer in the pancreas, and these pose "no clinical danger" to the four recipients, the ministry said.

The donor suffered brain death at Soroka University Medical Center in Beersheba. Before the transplants, the women underwent all the routine tests that a potential donor gets, including a chest scan and tests for AIDS and infectious hepatitis A and C. All were negative, said Prof. Rafael Beyar, head of Israel Transplant and director-general of Rambam. The pancreas was not donated because it was inflamed.

Beyar said there have been a few rare cases of transplanted organs passing cancer onto the recipients, but the ministry confirmed that this was not the case here.


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