The Agony and the Ecstasy: Stories from Organ Transplant Recipients

Vidya A. Fleetwood, Roslyn B Mannon, Krista L Lentine

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Transplantation affords recipients of a donated organ a second chance at life. However, the gift of life can incur impactful costs to the donor, the recipient, and their caregivers. In this collection of stories, thirteen authors explore their journey to transplantation and afterward-from physical pain and deconditioning; to navigating well-intentioned but rigid clinicians; to developing a greater appreciation of life, their community, and their abilities. We explore the recurring themes woven throughout the stories, including the solemn responsibility of accepting an organ, the challenges of living a new life with a body and mind changed by transplantation, the difficulty of preserving one's sense of self when one's clinicians are dominantly focused on the organ, and the spectrum of gifts that organ donation and transplantation provide.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)147-152
Number of pages6
JournalNarrative inquiry in bioethics
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2022


  • Humans
  • Living Donors
  • Qualitative Research
  • Tissue and Organ Procurement
  • Transplant Recipients
  • Organ Transplantation


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