The Federal court of justice has awarded two patient compensation, after an organ donation for relatives sick. The Doctors had not explained to you sufficiently about the possible risks, it said in the explanatory Memorandum (case VI ZR 318/17, etc.).

In the current case, two kidney donors from lower Saxony and North Rhine-Westphalia, has been observed in which after the procedure, a renal failure or a chronic Fatigue syndrome. You throw of the University hospital Essen, errors in the risk evaluation. One of the donors said, he would have made a full reconnaissance against the intervention.

The lower courts had rejected the suits. They noted mistakes in risk disclosure, for example, the prescribed’ve been wanting a neutral doctor. The judges were convinced, however, that the applicants had agreed to the donation, if you would have been informed of all the risks.

unlawful interference

The Federal constitutional court disagreed with this argument and overturned the rulings. “In order for the plaintiffs consent to the organ removal is ineffective and the procedure in each case is illegal,” in the reasoning of the court. Now the court must decide, Hamm is again about the extent of the damage.

the judges Also stressed the importance of a comprehensive education. “The observance of the provisions of the transplantation act is essential if people’s willingness to organ donation in the long term be supported,” argued the judge.

transplant, Why are donated in Germany are so few organs?

In the case of lower Saxony it is about a businessman and father of a family who had donated to his wife in the summer of 2010, a kidney. The today 54-year-old Ralf Zietz has recovered from the surgery never completely. He suffers, among other things, impaired kidney function and chronic fatigue. (Read more here).

Zietz stated: “The donor has a right to a comprehensive, unsparing, even the smallest of risks, comprehensive education. Only one hundred percent informed, the donation should be permitted.” He hoped that the process of raising Public awareness about what are the risks of living donation.

when is a living donation?

A living donation is only permitted to persons close to one another. In the year 2017, there were 557 transplants after living donation of kidneys in Germany. A reason for living donation is also still low willingness for organ donation after death, even if the number of organ donors has increased in recent times.

Minister of health, Jens Spahn (CDU) wants to increase the number of organ donors. He asks, for example, a double contradiction solution. Therefore, each is automatically considered as a donor, does not speak in his own lifetime, however, resist. In case of doubt, members should be able to make the decision.

Potential risks

in Front of a live donation, Doctors are obliged to the donor about risks. In this case, a second physician must be present. A Commission shall also examine whether the potential donor is voluntary and not forced donation, for example through psychological pressure or financial incentives.

After the donation, it can cause for both patients to complications. Conceivable infections or problems with the scar. In addition, it is possible that the body rejects the donor organ. For the donor, the risk that the remaining kidney is diseased, and therefore, a dialysis is needed or the data subject itself is in need of an Organ. Such complications are according to the German organ transplantation Foundation (DSO), however, rare.


Sam Yoon has many years of experiences in journalism. He has covered such areas as information technology, science, sports and politics. Yoon can be reached at 82-2-6956-6698.