SOURCE: The International Society for Heart and Lung Transplantation

The International Society for Heart and Lung Transplantation

April 25, 2013 11:02 ET

Lung Transplants From Donation After Cardiac Death Sees Success in Multicenter Study

Results Indicate Survival Rates Comparable to Traditional Donation After Brain Death

MONTREAL, QC--(Marketwired - April 25, 2013) - A multicenter study focused on the outcomes of donation after cardiac death (DCD) in lung transplantation versus donation after brain death (DBD) will be revealed today at the International Society for Heart and Lung Transplantation (ISHLT) 33rd Annual Meeting and Scientific Sessions in Montreal, Canada. The findings show favorable outcomes for lung transplant patients from DCD comparable to DBD. The results indicate positive survival rates at one month and one year post-transplant.

The study was the first study to evaluate the outcomes in a much larger number of cases using the recently established DCD ISHLT registry. The registry included data from nine centres across North America, Europe and Australia. The number of transplants from traditional DBD increased only slightly from 2003 to 2011; however, the number of DCD transplants increased dramatically from three cases per year to over 60 per year. In total, the study reviewed 244 transplants using DCD lungs and survival of these patients was compared to 2,744 using DBD.

"What we've learned from this multicenter study is that the survival rates were excellent in the DCD recipient group with 97 percent at one month and 89 percent at one year," said Marcelo Cypel, M.D., M.S., Assistant Professor of Surgery at the University of Toronto and Toronto General Hospital. "These rates are comparable to DBD rates and support the notion that DCD should be seen as a viable source for organ donation."

As a result of the study an interesting trend emerged. All the recipients who expired in the first 30 days post-transplant in the DCD group received lungs from donors with head trauma as the mechanism of death. This intriguing finding had not been previously discovered and requires additional research.

The International Society for Heart and Lung Transplantation (ISHLT) is a not-for-profit professional organization with more than 2,700 members from over 45 countries dedicated to improving the care of patients with advanced heart or lung disease through transplantation, mechanical support and innovative therapies via research, education and advocacy. For more information, visit

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