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What happens during a lung transplant?

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When a compatible donor’s lungs become available, you'll be called urgently to the transplant center to prepare for the surgery. Members of the surgical team travel to look at the deceased donor’s lungs to make sure they're healthy enough for transplant. If they are, your surgery begins right away, while the lungs are on the way to the center.

Surgeons may perform either a single lung transplant or a double lung transplant. There are advantages and disadvantages to each option, and the choice depends on your lung disease and other factors.

A surgeon will make a large cut in your chest during a lung transplant. The cut depends on the type of lung transplant:

You'll be asleep during the surgery due to general anesthesia. Some people getting a lung transplant will need to go on cardiopulmonary bypass during the surgery. While on bypass, the blood is pumped and enriched with oxygen by a machine, rather than by the heart and lungs.

  • A cut on one side of the chest only (for a single lung transplant)
  • A cut across the entire width of the front of the chest, or a cut on either side (for a double lung transplant)

From: Lung Transplant WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES:

Mason, R. , 5th edition, Saunders, 2010.  Murray and Nadel’s Textbook of Respiratory Medicine

Yusen, R.D. 2010; vol 4: pp 1047-1068. American Journal of Transplantation,

Ahmad, S. 2011; vol 139: pp 402-411. CHEST,

Todd, J.L. , 2010; vol 31: pp 365-372. Seminars in Respiratory & Critical Care Medicine

Boffini M. , 2010; vol 16: pp 53-61. Current Opinion in Critical Care

Yusen, R.D. , 2009; vol 15: pp 128-136. Proceedings of the American Thoracic Society

The International Society for Heart & Lung Transplantation web site: “Registries -- Heart/Lung Registries Quarterly Data Report.”

Reviewed by Minesh Khatri on June 4, 2017

SOURCES:

Mason, R. , 5th edition, Saunders, 2010.  Murray and Nadel’s Textbook of Respiratory Medicine

Yusen, R.D. 2010; vol 4: pp 1047-1068. American Journal of Transplantation,

Ahmad, S. 2011; vol 139: pp 402-411. CHEST,

Todd, J.L. , 2010; vol 31: pp 365-372. Seminars in Respiratory & Critical Care Medicine

Boffini M. , 2010; vol 16: pp 53-61. Current Opinion in Critical Care

Yusen, R.D. , 2009; vol 15: pp 128-136. Proceedings of the American Thoracic Society

The International Society for Heart & Lung Transplantation web site: “Registries -- Heart/Lung Registries Quarterly Data Report.”

Reviewed by Minesh Khatri on June 4, 2017

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