lung transplant

  • About

  • About Lung Transplant
  • A lung transplant is a specialized surgery where diseased or damaged lungs are replaced with healthy lungs, typically from a deceased donor. Lung transplants are generally the last resort for patients suffering from lung conditions after all other treatments fail to work. A lung transplant can involve the transplantation of one lung, both lungs, and even a heart and both lungs. Most lung transplants use lungs from deceased persons. However, adults with healthy lungs can also donate a lobe of their lung in a procedure called a living transplant.

  • Reasons for a Lung Transplant

  • Damaged or unhealthy lungs make it difficult to get oxygen, affecting all the other body functions. The initial treatment of lung conditions involves medication and the use of breathing devices. When they stop being effective, lung transplant becomes the last resort, and doctors recommend either a single or double lung transplant depending on the patient’s condition.

  • Some of the conditions that might require lung transplant are:

  • Pulmonary hypertension

  • Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Diseases

  • Pulmonary Fibrosis or Cystic Fibrosis

  • Scarring of the lungs

  • Coronary artery disease

  • Congenital lung defects

  • Sarcoidosis

  • Emphysema

  • Lung Transplant - Before the Procedure

  • Based on an evaluation of the patient’s medical history, a physical examination, and psychological assessment, the doctor will make the recommendation for a lung transplant. Next begins the wait for a donor organ. The number of available lungs is far less than the requirement for lung transplants so the waiting period may extend to months.

  • An ideal lung would come from a donor that has the same blood type and body size and is relatively in good condition. Once doctors find a suitable lung or pair of lungs, they order tests on the donor's lungs and the patient to check compatibility, and then the lung transplant is conducted.

  • The Procedure

  • Surgeons perform the lung transplant with the patient under general anesthesia, so there is no pain or discomfort. The surgeon enters a tube into the windpipe, makes an incision on the chest. Through the incision, the surgeon removes the diseased lungs. The patient may or may not be connected to a heart-lung bypass machine during the procedure. Once the surgeon removes the damaged lungs, the new donor lungs are inserted and reconnected with all blood vessels and airways. The doctor closes the incision, and the lung transplant is completed.

  • After the Procedure

Immediately after the lung transplant surgery comes a few days in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) where the patient is put on a mechanical ventilator to help them breathe. Tubes are also attached to drain fluids from the chest. Doctors give strong medicines intravenously to control pain and reduce the risk of rejection or infection. In a few days, the doctors remove the mechanical ventilator and shift the patient out of the ICU. Overall recovery can take 1-3 months.
  • Risks of Lung Transplant

Lung transplant is a major surgery and has significant risks involved.

  • Rejection: Even with a close match between the donor and recipient, the patient’s immune system is likely to attack the new lungs as foreign objects and reject them. Rejection can result in the need for new lungs or even cause death. Although the risk of rejection reduces over time, doctors prescribe drugs to suppress the immune system. Patients have to take these anti-rejection drugs life long to prevent rejection.

  • Infection: The immunosuppressant medications increase susceptibility to all kinds of infections. If the patient does contract a disease, it becomes difficult to treat due to immunosuppressant medications. Protecting against infections, especially respiratory viruses, is essential, so doctors advise patients to wash hands regularly, protect skin from scratches, and avoid crowds and unwell people.

  • Costs

Lung Transplant Cost in India
  • The all-inclusive lung transplant cost in India is USD 60,000

  • The success rate of lung transplants in India is 85-90 percent.

  • Top doctors performing lung transplants include Dr. Sandeep Attawar and Dr Nandkishore Kapadia. The best hospitals are Gleneagles Global Health City and Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital and Apollo Hospital, Chennai.

  • A lung transplant will involve a hospital stay of 8-10 days and another ten days of recovery after discharge.

  • Factors affecting

  • Factors affecting Lung Transplant Cost in Chennai
  • Lung transplant cost in Chennai: Presently lung transplant is only performed in Chennai and being the only state to do so, the costs are relatively high. There are experienced doctors and affordable packages for lung transplants.