Organ Transplant Recipients Contracted Breast Cancer From Their Organ Donor and All But One of Them Died
Few would argue with the importance of organ donation—138 million people in the U.S. have signed up as organ donors, and with more than 114 million Americans on the organ transplant waiting list as of August, the need for donors is greater than ever.
While typical complications for a recipient of a donated organ include rejection, surgery complications and infection, a recent case in the U.K. brought to light yet another risk even doctors couldn’t foresee: Donations by a woman with undiagnosed breast cancer resulted in four of the recipients of her organs contracting a “histologically similar” type of breast cancer over a period of 16 months to six years. Three out of four of them eventually died.
A teenager who watched his mother battle breast cancer has invented a high-tech bra that could become a powerful new tool in the fight against the disease. Julian Rios Cantu, 18, along with three friends, developed the Eva bra, which uses 200 biosensors to monitor the temperature, shape and weight of a woman's breasts. The bra, which is worn for 60 to 90 minutes a week, communicates data to a mobile and desktop app. If concerning changes arise, the wearer receives a message and can consult with her doctor.