Donating body to science/MS research

I want to donate my body for medical research after death, preferrably for research into MS. There’s a bit of info on this site but not much detail; I feel a bit odd about ringing the number of the MS tissue bank and asking how I go about donating and so on. Has anyone else here pledged their bodies to science?

I want to benefit others after my death, but also I am very opposed to the outrageous cost of funerals. I consider my body to be no more than a piece of meat after death and I do not want my family to be left with a huge bill to dispose of me, as I was when my father died. For this reason I only want to donate my body to an organisation that will promise to take everything, not just samples of tissue, and it’s not clear if the MS tissue bank does this - can anyone advise?

Thanks in advance for any help

Ive dontated my brain and spinal chord to ms tissue bank. Just give them a ring and theyll send you all the forms, plus donar card. Ive also registered my intent with gp and written it into my will.

They keep abreast of your symptoms and you also give permission for them to check details with your gp, all for research purposes.

Anything which helps find a cure for this disease, I wont be bothered once I am no more, but helping find future treatments/cures goes a long way towards a solution.

best wishes



I have registered with the MS Tissue Bank, they will take useful 'bits. Sorry I am not aware of anywhere that will take the whole lot.

I did hear a while ago that it is difficult to find somewhere to take the whole lot as research instituions, medical schools are a bit snowed under, so to speak. Whether this is true or not, I don’t know.

Good Luck, I dare say the zoo could put you to good use but there might be a few objections to this.

Haha! I honestly wouldn’t mind if I was fed to zoo animals!

Thanks for sharing your experiences, I think I am going to have to make some calls and look into this further.

When I enquired about this some years ago, I was told that when the bits for research have been taken, the remains are returned to the family for burial/cremation.


My lovely Grandad died last year and it was his wish that his body be left for medical research. He was 86. But when my mum enquired with the doctor who signed his death cert. He told her that he would not be of any use as he had worn all his parts out!!

My Grandad was a character and would have laughed his head off at this!


Fantastic. I too want to donate my useful bits to science. I don’t care what they do with the rest of me as long as they don’t put me in dog food!!! I will give the tissue bank a call and get it set up. I agree its really importent to let everyone know of your intentions as a lady I knew years ago wanted her whole body to be donated to a uni for medical studies and didn’t tell anyone and the family were quite suprised when the home she was in told them and organised for her to be picked up!!

Brain and spinal cord to the tissue bank. Any other useful bits to whoever needs them. Burn the rest.

I used to have nightmares about being buried alive; no need to worry about that anymore!


Thanks Bren and everyone for the info.

I always wanted to be an organ donor but have been told I can’t because of the MS (I can’t even donate blood!).

Donating my brain & spinal cord for research sounds just as good! I would be very pleased and relieved to know bits of me could help future MSers!

I’m on the phone to the ms tissue bank on Monday!

Emma x

I am sure your organs will be very welcome.

  1. Can I be a donor if I have an existing medical condition?

Yes, in most circumstances. Having a medical condition does not necessarily prevent a person from becoming an organ or tissue donor. The decision about whether some or all organs or tissue are suitable for transplant is made by a healthcare professional, taking into account your medical history.

There is only one condition where organ donation is ruled out completely. A person cannot become an organ or tissue donor if they have, or are suspected of having, CJD. In very rare cases, the organs of donors with HIV or hep C have been used to help others with the same conditions. This is only ever carried out when both parties have the condition. All donors have rigorous checks to guard against infection.


“… in most circumstances … does not necessarily prevent a person from becoming an organ donor …”

That sounds too uncertain to me, but I’ll phone them too on Monday.

Emma x

I’m an organ donor no questions were ever asked about my MS. I will be leaving my brain and spinal cord to the MS TIssue bank and the rest if it’s not taken for medical research can be cremated.

You can definitely be an organ donor. I contacted the organ donation register and asked them

I feel the same way Parky and would also mention that you don’t actually have to have a funeral as such, if you don’t want one. Just make sure it is in your will/living will and/or that your family are aware of your wishes. Mine are and that I would rather they had a good meal and a few drinks to toast my memory than go through all of that expensive ceremony because it is the “done thing”, especially as we are not religious in any way.

Oooops, sorry - Perky. Must have been thinking it was a bit chilly!!

Is there no edit function??