Attitude and Willingness towards Tissue Donation in Iranian High School Students: Bone Marrow and Blood

S Sanavi, R Afshar, N Sanavi
International Journal of Organ Transplantation Medicine 2011, 2 (4): 184-7

BACKGROUND: Tissue donation has been promising in prolonging the lives of people with life-threatening diseases.

OBJECTIVE: To assess the attitude and willingness of high school students towards bone marrow (BM) and blood (as tissue) donation for maintaining a safe and adequate pool.

METHODS: This cross-sectional study was conducted among the high school girls, aged 15-18 years, who studied in natural sciences, mathematics and humanities. All participants filled a questionnaire consisting of age, religion, education levels and study branch, attitude and willingness towards BM and blood donation according to a Likert scale.

RESULTS: Out of 416 students, with the mean±SD age of 16.3±1.2 years, 31% studied in grade I, 27% in grade II (25% natural sciences, 27% mathematics, and 48% humanities), 26% in grade III (30% natural sciences, 34% mathematics, and 36% humanities), and 16% in pre-university level (college) (32% natural sciences, 42% mathematics, and 6% humanities). The students had highly positive attitudes toward BM and blood donation (mean±SD score of 4.2±0.54). The willingness for BM and blood donation was declared respectively, in 87% and 71% of respondents. Moreover, 16% of students wanted to donate only to their relatives and 84% to all persons in need of therapy. There was no significant correlation between the donation willingness and educational levels and study branch; however, these variables significantly correlated with attitude towards tissue donation (p=0.02, p=0.01, respectively).

CONCLUSION: Despite positive attitude towards BM and blood donation, willingness for BM donation is lesser than blood which may be attributed to insufficient information about this type of tissue donation. An organized educational program for high school students in all aspects of tissue donation seems necessary.

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