Thursday, 3 March 2016

Skin Donation and Skin Banking

Skin banking is a facility where the skin is collected from eligible deceased donor and processed as per international protocols.

Skin can be stored in the skin bank at 4-8o Celsius up to 5 years. The stored skin can be used for Burns Patient who have Deep Burns, Chemical Burns, Electrical Burns, Radiation Burns. Statistics have shown that 80% of the burn victims are women and children

Skin Donation Procedure

  • Pledge from the donors 
  • Donor card given
  • After His/her Death consent of skin harvesting taken from the immediate family member
  • Blood Collection
  • Skin harvesting from Lower back and thigh of the dead Body.
  • Donor area is nicely bandaged by the experts.


  • When a person can donation his skin?  - A person can donate his skin after his death. Skin can be donated within in 6 hours from the time of death. 
  • Who can donate skin?   -Any one can donate skin irrespective of sex & blood group, the minimum age of the donor should be 18 years but there is no upper age limit, even a 100-year-old person can donate his skin and it will be used for treatment. 
  • How much time the whole Skin Donation procedure takes? - The whole procedure takes only about 30 – 45 minutes. 
  • Is it necessary to transport the donor to the hospital after death? - No, Skin Bank Team will come to the donor’s home, hospital or morgue wherever the donor is kept. We don’t need to shift the donor to the operating room, hospital or ambulance. 
  • Who performs the Skin Harvesting procedure? - Skin Harvesting is performed by Skin donation Team consisting of one Doctor, two Nurses and one attendant. 
  • How the skin is harvested?  -A special instrument called DERMATOME harvests skin, it is a battery-operated instrument made exclusively for skin harvesting only. 
  • Is the consent for skin donation is taken before the skin harvesting procedure?  -Yes, our doctor will take consent of the next of kin of the donor and also a witness is required to sign the consent form before we start the procedure.The whole procedure will be explained to you by our Doctor before we start the procedure. 
  • From which part of the body skin is harvested? - Skin is harvested from both the legs, both the thighs and the back. 
  • Is entire thickness of the skin is harvested?  - NO, there are total 8 layers of skin; we harvest only the 1/8th layer i.e. the uppermost layer of the skin is only harvested. 
  • Is their any bleeding or disfigurement to the body?  No, there is no bleeding from the site where skin if harvested from and there is no disfigurement to the body also. After the procedure we bandage the parts from where skin is harvested in a proper way. 
  • What conditions render skin unfit for donation?  - Skin of persons suffering from AIDS, Hepatitis B & C, Sexually Transmitted Diseases, Skin Cancer, Active Skin Disease and Septicemia are considered unfit for donation. At the time of skin harvesting, blood sample from the body of the deceased is also taken and necessary test for HIV, Viral markers & Hepatitis is carried out at the Skin Bank. 
  • What about diabetes & hypertension?  - Even donors with these conditions can donate their skin. 
  • How will my donation be used?  -After the skin is harvested, skin will be evaluated, processed, screened at our skin bank, and then supplied to the Burns Surgeon for transplanting on burn patients. 
  • How do you preserve the skin & how long it can be preserved?  - We preserve skin in 85% glycerol solution, it is stored between 4 to 8 degree Celsius and it can be stored for a period of 5 years. 
  • Do we have to pay the Skin Donation Team? - No, you don’t have to pay anything to the Skin Donation Team, selling & buying organs is illegal. 
  • Do we need to produce any documents to the Skin Bank Team when they arrive? -Yes, you need to produce the DEATH CERTIFICATE and its photocopy that will be evaluated by the Team Doctor before starting the procedure. 
  • Is there any kind of Donor-Recipient matching required for skin transplant? -  No, any one’s skin can be transplanted on any one, there is no blood matching, no color matching, no age matching required. Once all the blood reports are negative the donor skin can be transplanted freely

It’s not compulsory to pledge or register with us, even if you have not registered we will carry out the skin donation call once we receive your call in time. If you register with us we will provide you with a Skin Donor I.D Cards, Skin donation Magnetic Sticker, “I AM A SKIN DONOR” Pocket card for future references. You can register online on

Atijeevan has been trying to spread awareness about Skin Donation for almost three years now. We got in touch with Smt Meenakshi Lekhi, member LS and sought her help regarding the same. We are really glad and grateful that she raised this issue in the parliament. We thank her for her concerns towards Acid survivors. Here is the video link of LS proceedings.



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