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Surgery. 1994 Oct;116(4):712-8.

Survival and functional outcome after single and bilateral lung transplantation. Loyola Lung Transplant Team.

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Department of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery, Loyola University Medical Center, Maywood, IL 60153.



The experience at Loyola University Chicago was retrospectively reviewed to evaluate survival and functional outcome after single lung transplantation (SLT) and bilateral lung transplantation (BLT).


Ninety patients underwent lung transplantation at Loyola University Chicago between April 1990 and December 1993. Mean age was 45 years (range, 13 to 66 years). Fifty percent were male. Pre-lung transplant pulmonary diseases were as follows: emphysema and/or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease in 43 patients, pulmonary fibrosis in 13, cystic fibrosis in 14, pulmonary hypertension in eight, repeated transplantation for obliterative bronchiolitis in four, bronchiectasis in two, bronchoalveolar cell carcinoma in two, sarcoidosis in one, primary obliterative bronchiolitis in one, histiocytosis X in one, and lymphangiomyomatosis in one. Fifty-seven patients underwent SLT, and 33 had BLT. Maintenance immunosuppression medications consisted of cyclosporine, azathioprine, and prednisone.


Perioperative complications were as follows: seven of 33 patients bled after BLT, and two of 57 bled after SLT. Bronchial complications were found in six of 66 (9%) BLT anastomoses and eight of 57 (14%) SLT anastomoses. Nine operative deaths occurred in SLT patients: six from allograft failure, one from infection, one from intrapulmonary hemorrhage, and one from bronchial dehiscence. Only two patients died in the perioperative period after BLT and that was of infection. Three late deaths occurred after BLT, all as a result of infection; 13 recipients died late after SLT: five of infection, four patients from lymphoma, two of pancreatitis, one of tension pneumothorax, and one of pulmonary embolism. For the entire patient population the actuarial 1- and 2-year survival rates were 72% and 68%, respectively. One-year survival rates were significantly better for patients undergoing lung transplantation for obstructive and nonrestrictive lung diseases than those of patients undergoing lung transplantation for vascular or restrictive pulmonary disease. Recipients of BLT had a trend toward better survival than recipients of SLT. Lung function 6 months after transplantation measured by forced expiratory volume in 1 second was significantly better in BLT than SLT, 71% of predicted versus 54%.


Patients who undergo BLT have significantly better postoperative pulmonary function than those who undergo SLT. On the basis of the study there was a trend toward better survival with BLT.

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