Catholic Dictionary




The transfer of an organ from one body, or body part, to another. In general, the transplant of organs from living donors is permissible when the expected benefit to the recipient is proportionate to the harm done to the donor. But always the condition is that the loss of such organ does not deprive the donor of life or of functional integrity f the body. Regarding the transplant of single vital organs, such as the heart, two problems are always involved. One is to know precisely when a person is dead. the other is the effectiveness of a transplant if a vital organ is transferred from an actually dead body. the medical temptation is to anticipate death in order to guarantee a successful transplant.