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What criteria must I meet to be considered for a lung transplant?

People who may be helped by a lung transplant undergo an extensive evaluation. Based on the evaluation results, the lung transplant team decides whether or not a lung transplant is appropriate as the best therapeutic option.

The decision to proceed with a lung transplant represents a lifelong commitment to self-care and medical follow-up, so the ultimate decision rests with the people needing a lung transplant. Only they can evaluate their quality of life and determine whether or not a lung transplant is worth pursuing.

Lyall A. Gorenstein, MD
Thoracic Surgery (Cardiothoracic Vascular)
For a person with end-stage pulmonary disease to be considered for lung transplantation surgery you must:
  • be between ages 16 and 65
  • not have acute and/or critical illness
  • not have significant other organ dysfunction, such as severe heart, kidney or liver disease
  • be cancer-free for at least two years
  • have abstained from cigarette smoking and alcohol and drug addiction for at least six months
  • have a track record of compliance with follow-up visits and medications
  • have no significant and active psychiatric problems
  • have a current body weight that is more than 70% or less than 150% of ideal body weight
  • be able to pass a standard six-minute walk test and participate in pulmonary rehabilitation program
  • be HIV and hepatitis negative
  • not be infected with certain difficult-to-treat microorganisms

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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.