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Transplant trends

2021: More organ transplants than ever in a single year

Thanks to the gift of life from organ donors and their families, the number of deceased organ donors and deceased-donor organ transplants performed in 2020 and 2021 in the United States reached all-time highs.

green tree2021: Record-setting streak continues. See the year-end data highlights.

2021: More organ transplants than ever in a single year

Thanks to the gift of life from organ donors and their families, the number of deceased organ donors and deceased-donor organ transplants performed in 2020 and 2021 in the United States reached all-time highs.

Fingerprint making heart shapeRecord 40,000 transplants honors legacy of donors. Read more.

Continuous improvement

The U.S. system for organ donation and recovery is among the best in the world. But there is more that we can and must do. UNOS works with the organ donation and transplant community to drive improvement and save more lives.

10 things UNOS is doing to get the right organ to the right patient at the right time

106,079
people need a lifesaving organ transplant (total waiting list candidates). Of those, 61,374 people are active waiting list candidates. Totals as of today 6:01am EDT

2022 donors, deceased and living

8,493

donors

Total Donors January - May 2022 as of 06/27/2022

2022 transplants

17,116

transplants performed this year

Total Transplants January - May 2022 as of 06/27/2022

2021: 11th consecutive record-breaking year

More than 13,800

deceased donors in 2021

Even with a 34.7% increase in deceased donation over the last five years, the need for organ donors is immense.

Sign up to be an organ donor

Data reports

UNOS’ online database, UNetSM, contains Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network data regarding every organ donation and transplant event occurring in the U.S. since October 1, 1987. It enables the donation and transplantation community to cooperatively and efficiently share the limited number of donated organs.

Click below to view the type of data you want to explore.

View of OPTN metrics dashboard from June 2021

OPTN metrics dashboard for donation and transplant trends

More than 6,500

living donor transplants in 2021

The number of living donor transplants has been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. But living donor transplants have increased 14.2 percent over the 2020 total.

Learn about living donation

Omar was gifted “a second shot at life” when his brother became his living liver donor.

Transplants by organ type

In total, health care teams across the country performed 41,355* transplants with organs from both deceased and living donors in 2021. Here, see the percentage change from between 2020 and 2021 by organ type.

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Kidney

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8.1%

2021: 24,670

2020: 22,817

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Liver

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3.7%

2021: 9,236

2020: 8,906

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Heart

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4.3%

2021: 3,817

2020: 3,658

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Lung

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0.6%

2021: 2,524

2020: 2,539

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Pancreas

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5.9%

2021: 143

2020: 135

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Kidney-pancreas

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0.8%

2021: 820

2020: 827

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Intestine

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5.5%

2021: 96

2020: 91

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Heart-lung

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22.4%

2021: 45

2020: 58

brown-green circle with letters VCA

Vascular composite allograft

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20%

2021: 4

2020: 5

*Based on OPTN data as of May 17, 2022. Data subject to change based on future data submission or correction.

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