Single lung transplantation: Alternative indications and technique

J. H. Calhoon, F. L. Grover, W. J. Gibbons, C. L. Bryan, S. M. Levine, Steven R Bailey, L. Nichols, C. Lum, J. K. Trinkle

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

180 Scopus citations


Twenty-two patients have undergone 23 single lung transplants between March 1980 and April 1990 at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio. The actuarial survival rate is 77.27% at 12 months and 72.73% at 24 months. There have been no instances of bronchial dehiscence or stenosis, even though 13 of the patients were on a program of preoperative prednisone, every patient had high-dose perioperative methylprednisolone, and omental wraps were not used on any bronchial anastomosis. Of particular interest is the fact that three patients had primary pulmonary hypertension, three had secondary pulmonary hypertension, and 10 patients had chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, due in five cases to an α1-antitrypsin deficiency. Each of these entities was previously thought to contraindicate single lung transplantation. Donor selection was based on an oxygen tension/inspired oxygen concentration ratio greater than 300, donor/recipient chest circumference within 3 inches, clear chest x-ray film, negative sputum Gram stain, and less than 6-hour estimated ischemic time. Harvest technique included donor prostaglandin E1 500 μg, topical slush, and pulmonoplegia with cold Euro-Collins solution. The heart and lung were separated in situ rather than the heart lung block being removed. A telescoping bronchial anastomosis was performed with 4-0 Prolene (not absorbable) sutures. We conclude that single lung transplantation has evolved into a simple operation, necessitating meticulous preoperative and postoperative care, which can be performed on a wide spectrum of critically ill patients with an acceptable mortality rate.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)816-825
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1991

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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