A study of 80,347 living kidney donations in the U.S. between 1994 and 2009 found that 3.1 of every 10,000 donors died 90 days after the surgery -- a mortality ratio that is high when compared with that of nondonors but is still low when similar procedures are considered. The mortality rate over the longer term was not higher for live donors than those in the control group, the study said. Experts hope the findings will encourage more people to sign up as living donors.

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