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Surgeons in Chicago, US had performed a double lung transplant on a young patient by giving her a new set of lungs with severe lung damage from COVID-19. The patient is in her twenties and underwent the difficult 10-hour procedure.
On Thursday, Northwestern Medicine announced about the procedure that it took place last Friday. Very few COVID-19 survivors, in China and Europe, had received lung transplants.
The young Chicago patient was on a ventilator and heart-lung machine for nearly two months before being operated at Northwestern Memorial Hospital.
Dr. Ankit Bharat, who had performed the 10-hour operation, said that the procedure was very challenging as the virus had made lot of holes in her lungs that has almost fused to the chest wall. She will remain on a ventilator till her body heals but can to visit her family via phone video. Doctors mentioned that her chances for leading a normal life are good.
Dr. Bharat said the patient had recently moved to Chicago from North Carolina to stay with her boyfriend. She was healthy but her condition rapidly worsened after she was hospitalized in late April. Doctors had to wait for 6 weeks for her body to clear the coronavirus before they could consider a transplant.
Lungs transplant accounted for only 7% of the approximately 40,000 U.S. organ transplants in last year. It is generally very difficult to find organ donors and patients have to wait weeks on the transplant list. The Chicago patient was in a bad state, with signs of her heart, kidneys and liver failing so she was immediately moved up in line.
Dr. Rade Tomic, medical director of the hospital’s lung transplant program said that they are expecting a complete recovery in her.
Source: The Hindu