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Can donor lungs be excluded from transplant based on the cause of death?

Research has shown that the cause of death in an organ donor should not automatically be an exclusionary criterion for lung transplant consideration. Individual transplant centers evaluate donors on a case-by-case basis and assess the risk and make the best match of donor and recipient.

Based on the study results, it appears that if centers wanted to expand their individual criteria for donation, they could successfully expand their donor pool. Questions around these types of donors or even marginal lungs can be assessed by ex-vivo perfusion (therapy applied to donor lungs outside of the body before transplant that improves organ quality and makes lungs safe for transplant). This should lead to an increase in the number of transplants overall.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.