Polish attitudes towards unspecified kidney donation: a cross-sectional study

Paulina Kurleto*, Lucyna Tomaszek, Irena Milaniak, Katrina A. Bramstedt

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Background: Chronic kidney disease effects about 4.2 million people in Poland, yet Polish organ donation research is rare. In addition, compared to other countries in the world, Poland has a relatively low living donation rate. Still, little is known about how Poles would react to the possibility of living kidney donation to strangers. A study was conducted to examine public opinion about living kidney donation, as well as their knowledge about it, willingness to donate to a stranger, and support for a possible expansion of existing Polish organ donation legislation to include living donation to strangers. Methods: A self-report questionnaire, which included a socio-demographic datasheet (9 questions), 16 questions about attitudes towards living donation, and 1 question about knowledge concerning transplantation law was sent to the respondents from December 2020 – February 2021. Logistic regression was used to assess factors affecting the support of the legalization of unspecified kidney donation amongst the participants. Results: More than sixty percent (62.1) of respondents supported legalization of unspecified living kidney donation. Such legalization would be accepted by people who accept a choice of a family member to donate a kidney to a stranger (OR = 3.50; Cl 95%: 1.49 to 4.85), who think bone-marrow transplant is safe (OR = 2.65; Cl 95%: 1.80 to 3.91), recognize the benefit of carrying out tests before donating a kidney (OR = 2.56; Cl 95%: 1.79 to 3.69), would agree to receive a kidney from another person (OR = 2.24; Cl 95%: 2.53 to 3.13), or would agree to donate organs after death (OR = 2.06; Cl 95%: 1.45 to 2.95). However, support for unspecified living kidney donation would not be given by respondents fearing the risk of organ trafficking (OR = 0.54; Cl 95%: 0.38 to 0.79). Conclusions: In Poland there is strong support for legalization of unspecified living kidney donation. It is vital that future legislation define organ trafficking as a crime with serious punishment so that legal unspecified living kidney donation is not hindered. Trial registration: The study was registered with ClinicalTrials.gov (ID: NCT04789122) on 08/03/2021.

Original languageEnglish
Article number142
JournalBMC Nephrology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2022


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