Utah woman is one of very few double-living organ donors in the world

Jan 25, 2023, 10:48 PM | Updated: Jan 26, 2023, 1:20 pm

MIDVALE, Utah — After her latest surgery in January, Robin Vedaa became one of fewer than 100 in the world who are double-living organ donors, donating not one but two organs while alive. Vedaa said she felt compelled to give the gift of life to strangers in need.

“Hearing about the statistics and the numbers, I thought you know ‘wow, there are still so many people waiting for organs’,” Vedaa said.

In 2019, she donated her kidney to a young woman she now considers a close friend. The two now share an unbreakable bond and have remained close over the years.

“We met three weeks after surgery and it was fabulous. I’ve loved her from the start,” Vedaa said. “I can’t even imagine my life without her. She is like the second daughter that I never had.”

DonorConnect, a local organization that connects donors with recipients, said there are currently 883 people in the state of Utah on the waiting list: 657 for kidneys, 148 for livers, 1 for pancreas, 13 for kidney/pancreas, 58 for hearts, and 6 for lungs.

When Vedaa learned she could donate a portion of liver, she signed up.

“I gave my kidney to an adult, so why not this time give to a child,” she said.

On January 11, she donated 20% of her liver to a young child at Primary Children’s Hospital. She said the surgery has given her a new perspective on life and encourages others to consider donating.

“I got to give some child their life back, I mean who wouldn’t want to do that,” she said. “You have something that could help somebody else, you need to give it to them help them, you know, that’s why we are all here.”

Vedaa’s liver is regenerating and doctors tell her it will be back to 100% in about two months.

If you are interested in learning more about organ donation, visit DonorConnect.life.

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Utah woman is one of very few double-living organ donors in the world