7% of all lung transplants in the US is related to COVID-19 associated respiratory failure
Lung transplantation as an option for patients with COVID-19 associated respiratory failure has increased across transplant centers in the US, but much remains unknown regarding the clinical scenario and recommendations for these cases. A NEJM Letter to the Editor by Chikwe et al, finds that from August 1, 2020 to September 30, 2021, 214 of 3039 (7%) lung transplantations reported in the OPTN were performed for COVID-19 related pulmonary failure. Their analysis demonstrated similar 3-month survival for patients who received a lung transplant for COVID-19 related respiratory failure compared to those who received a lung transplant for other reasons. The authors conclude that while more information is needed to refine the patient selection and clinical recommendation, lung transplantation for irreversible COVID-19 related respiratory failure remains an acceptable treatment modality for selective patients.
LINK TO NEJM (https://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMc2117024?query=NC)