The authors review publications in the past year on the risks and benefits of living donation. As of early 2003, the current morbidity and mortality of laparoscopic and open nephrectomy were described. The advantages of laparoscopic nephrectomy were further demonstrated; some centers described right-sided laparoscopic nephrectomy with the same results as left-sided nephrectomy. Long-term follow-up of living donors (20 to 37 years) showed that most had good renal function. A survey of insurance companies found that all would provide life insurance to a healthy donor. Several publications dealt with ethical issues associated with living donation and with kidney sales.