Liberalization of Donor Criteria in Lung Transplantation

Whiting, David; Banerji, Anamika; Ross, David; Levine, Michael; Shpiner, Robert; Lackey, Stephanie; Ardehali, Abbas
October 2003
American Surgeon;Oct2003, Vol. 69 Issue 10, p909
Academic Journal
Donor shortage remains a major obstacle to widespread application of lung transplantation. In region 5, including California, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah, and Arizona, the United Network of Organ Sharing (UNOS) database median waiting time for lung transplant candidates in 2000-2001 exceeded 17 months. The purpose of this study was to determine the impact of liberalization of donor criteria on median waiting time and short-term outcome of lung transplantation. From September 1999 to October 2002, 42 patients underwent lung transplantation from nonstandard donors. The donors were classified as nonstandard due to (1) infiltrate on chest radiograph (n = 33), (2) PaO[sub2] < 300 on FiO[sub2] 1.0 and PEEP 5 (n = 3), (3) PaO[sub2] < 100 on FiO[sub2] 0.4 and PEEP 5 (n = 3), (4) purulent sputum on bronchoscopy (n = 22), and (5) smoking history greater than 50 pack-years (n = 1). Perioperative characteristics and short-term outcome of this group was analyzed. The median waiting time for this cohort was 114 days (range, 10-1267), as compared with the national UNOS database median waiting time of 24 months between 1996 and 2001. The incidence of ischemia reperfusion injury was 2.3 per cent. None of the recipients developed pneumonia. The median ventilator support time was 2 days (range, 1-95). The median ICU stay and hospital stay were 4 days (range, 2-103) and 14 days (range, 5-194), respectively. The 3-month survival was 97.6 per cent. Selective liberalization of donor lung criteria can decrease the waiting time and is associated with favorable short-term outcome. Utilization of nonstandard lungs can expand the donor pool.


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