BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Kidneys are the organs that filter waste products from the blood. They are also involved in regulating blood pressure, electrolyte balance and red blood cell production in the body (Khatri, 2016).
End stage renal disease is one of the disorders growing among all population groups worldwide, which is the final stage of chronic kidney disease in which the kidneys no longer function well enough to meet the needs of daily life. The kidneys of people with end stage renal disease function below 10 percent of their normal ability, which may mean they are barely functioning or not functioning at all (Health on the net, 2017)
Many kidney diseases attack the nephrons, the tiny filtering units in the kidneys.This leads to poor blood filtering, which eventually leads to end stage renal disease. End stage renal disease is caused most commonly by diabetes, hypertension and glomerulonephritis. Other causes include long term blockage of the urinary tract by kidney stones, enlarged prostate or certain types of cancer, congenital abnormalities, polycystic kidney disease, certain auto immune conditions such as lupus etc. Patient permanently depend upon renal replacement therapy ie dialysis or transplantation in order to avoid life-threatening uremia.
Kidney transplantation is the standard and preferred treatment option for patients with end-stage renal disease with potential for improved quality of life and increased life expectancy.
Kidney donation is when a person gives their kidney when they are alive or dead (donor) to someone in need of new kidney (recipient) as a result of bad one like in end stage renal disease(ESRD) (Evanisko and Alexis, 2013).
In the United State of America(USA), more than 80,000 patients are on the waiting list and many wait more than 5years for a kidney from a deceased donor, only 1% of death result in kidneys that could be used while 4,500 people die every year waiting for a kidney transplant (Swaminathan, Mor, Morthorota and Travelli, 2013).
More Australians received a lifesaving kidney in 2013 than ever before with a total of 645 Australians donating their kidneys to people in need of kidney transplantation (Australian and New Zealand Kidney Donation Registry, 2016).
Statistics has shown that no fewer than 37 million Nigerians are suffering from various stages of kidney diseases, simply put, one in every seven Nigerians is suffering from one form of kidney disorder or another. The need for a kidney transplant arises when a person’s kidney has lost all their functions and the kidney function is being managed artificially by the help of a dialysis machine. Kidney transplant remains the only cure for end stage renal disease (Bamgboye, 2016).
As kidney transplantation services are on the rise in Nigeria, so will the need for kidney donation. However kidney transplantation is still hampered by shortage of kidneys in both developed and developing countries due to discrepancy between the demand and supply of donor kidneys(Evanisko and Alexis, 2013). Shortage of kidneys for transplantation is largely attributed to unwillingness of the public to donate kidneys.
Successful kidney donation depends on multiple factors such as legislation, which helps to develop the process and agencies that further put the guidelines into practice. However, whatever the system, health care workers’ belief and attitudes play a major role in helping to make this happen (El-Shoubaki, 2008).
Health care practitioners help in identifying donors and initiating the appropriate process and it is their attitude that directly influences decision of potential kidney donors, their families and relatives.
In Delta State University Teaching Hospital (DELSUTH), Oghara, a kidney transplant program was inaugurated in 2013 with two living related donors, who successfully donated a kidney to their relatives in January, 2014.
Crucial to the sustenance of the transplant program is the attitude of health workers, hence this study seeks to present a survey of health workers’ attitude towards kidney donation in DELSUTH, Oghara.