A woman from southeastern China donated part of her liver for transplant to save the life of her husband who has chronic hepatitis, according to a newspaper report.
The man’s operation was successful and the couple are now recovering from their surgeries, Yangtse Evening Post reported.
The couple are farmers with two children and come from He county in Anhui province.
The wife, 51, agreed to donate part of her liver after her husband’s condition deteriorated and he was transferred to a hospital in Nanjing.
His condition could not be improved through treatment and his life was under threat, the report said.
“Some patients who have severe symptoms cannot even survive a week,” Sun Beicheng, vice-president at the hospital, was quoted as saying. “The best choice was to have a liver transplant.”
The couple, whose full names were not given, were told that finding a suitable donor was extremely difficult, but healthy family members with the right blood type were often the best choice.
”This time when my father fell ill everybody was willing to give their liver since this family would not be complete if anybody passed away,” the man’s son was quoted as saying.
The man’s wife had surgery to remove part of her liver for transplant last month.
Sun said China had a shortage of organ donors, partly due to traditional beliefs that the body should remain whole after death.
China performs 3,000 to 4,000 liver transplants a year, but 10 to 20 times more patients are on waiting lists for a donor.