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Lung Transplant

Lung Transplant - What it is

Lung transplantation is an effective treatment for patients with end-stage lung disease – a condition where the lungs are so diseased that they can no longer perform their normal function to obtain sufficient oxygen for the body.

Lung Transplant - Symptoms

Lung Transplant - How to prevent?

Lung Transplant - Causes and Risk Factors

Lung Transplant - Diagnosis

Who needs a lung transplant?

Patients with end-stage lung disease are likely candidates for lung transplants. Some common causes of end-stage lung disease which require lung transplantation include:
  • Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
  • Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF)
  • Bronchiectasis
  • Pulmonary Hypertension (Primary and Secondary)

Who is eligible for a lung transplant?

When the transplant team decides that a candidate is suitable for transplantation, the patient’s name will be placed on the waiting list.  Donor lungs are matched with recipients according to the following criteria: 
  • Size (height and weight)
  • Chest measurements (chest circumference & chest x-ray measurements)
  • Blood type (O, A, B or AB)

The quality of the donor lungs is of the utmost priority. Donor lungs are thoroughly evaluated by the lung transplant team. The evaluation includes examination of the donor’s chest x-ray, medical history, social history (with particular emphasis on tobacco and substance abuse), amount of oxygen in the blood (arterial blood gases) and bronchoscopy.

Lung Transplant - Treatments

Lung transplantation involves removing the diseased lung or lungs from the recipient and replacing either one (single lung transplant) or both (bilateral lung transplant) with healthy ones from a recently deceased donor. Lung transplantation represents the best hope for patients with end-stage lung disease as it can offer patients better quality of life after the transplant.

Lung Donation

Donors are individuals who are brain-dead, meaning that the brain shows no signs of life while the person’s body is being kept alive by artificial means. Donors have often died as a result of a road accident, stroke or severe head injury. Since not enough organs are available for transplant, patients may wait for months for a transplant and some do not survive the wait. 

For lung patients, the candidates will be strongly urged to participate in a pulmonary rehabilitation programme. Such a programme of monitored physical exercise will help build strength and endurance in preparation for the transplant and increase the chances of a successful outcome following the transplant.

Lung Transplant - Preparing for surgery

Lung Transplant - Post-surgery care

Lung Transplant - Other Information

​The National Heart Centre Singapore (NHCS) set up the lung transplant programme in 2000. For more information, visit here.

The information provided is not intended as medical advice. Terms of use. Information provided by SingHealth