The use of volunteer living donors to provide kidneys for renal homotransplantation has many medical, social, and legal implications. The infliction of major operative trauma upon healthy well-motivated donors cannot be dismissed lightly since the chance for ultimate viability of the homograft in its new environment is highly speculative. In the long run, justification for continued use of volunteer donors depends upon the demonstration that the donor operation carries a negligible risk and that the benefit for the recipient patients is substantial and predictable.
In this communication, data will be analyzed concerning the risk involved to the donor, based upon experience with 40 patients. In addition, a detailed account of the donor operation will be provided. In the existing literature on renal transplantation, this phase of technical care has never been fully described, although it is evident that both the operative risk and the quality of the homograft obtained are