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Saudi Journal of Kidney Diseases and Transplantation
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ORIGINAL ARTICLE Table of Contents   
Year : 1996  |  Volume : 7  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 131-134
Survey of Opinion of Secondary School Students on Organ Donation

1 The Saudi Center for Organ Transplantation, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
2 Ministry of Health, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

Correspondence Address:
Faissal A.M Shaheen
Director & Consultant Nephrobgist, Saudi Center for Organ Transplantation, P.O. Box 27049, Riyadh 11417
Saudi Arabia
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PMID: 18417926

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We conducted a survey of opinion of a sample of senior high school students in Saudi Arabia to evaluate their awareness of the importance of organ donation and concept of brain death. There were 839 students from nine schools, 745 males and 94 females. The participants were not primed about these topics before answering the questionnaire, which was answered at school. The study group declared the level of education of the parents. Twenty three percent knew about the Saudi Center for Organ Transplantation, but 61% could only guess its function. Fifty eight percent could not differentiate between "natural 11 death and brain death and 93% were not aware of how to document it. Elaboration on these questions showed variable explanations. Sixty eight percent agreed to donate organs of relatives in case of brain death, and 91% would donate a kidney to their relatives. However, 38% agreed to donate organs of their own to organ failure patients other then relatives. Thirty five percent knew about the organ donation cards, but only 12% carried them, and only 48% would consent to include the word "donor" on their driving licenses. Forty two percent knew about the opinion of Islamic religion toward organ donation. Thirty one percent agreed to send patients for organ transplantation abroad due to their belief that transplantation technology in Saudi Arabia is lacking, There were no significant differences in the answers according to schools, gender, students of different curricula, having a friend or relative with organ failure, or the level of the education of the parents. This study suggests the great need for education of the new generation about the importance of organ donation and the concept of brain death. We believe that including these topics in the curricula of schools would help disseminating this knowledge to the public in Saudi Arabia.

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