Doctors at the Okayama University Hospital in Japan have successfully transplanted into a 3-year-old boy part of a lung from the boy’s own mother on Monday. This successful operation is touted to be the first successful transplant of the middle lobe of a lung from a living donor, the hospital revealed.
Traditionally, it is the inferior lobe of the lung that is transplanted from living donors, as it has greater breathing capacity. But the age of the boy meant that the part to be transplanted needed to be of a smaller size, and in this case, the middle lobe of the mother’s lung was of the right size for the boy. “We deem that the operation has been successful,” the hospital said in a statement, also adding that a middle lobe transplant was extremely difficult. “A pump-oxygenator was detached from the recipient and he started breathing with the transplanted part of the lung,” the hospital added. The hospital revealed that it took 5 hours for the whole operation to finish. The boy is also confirmed to be the youngest lung transplant recipient in Japan, according to the hospital.
The boy had initially undergone bone-marrow transplant for leukemia two years ago. Unfortunately, he later developed graft-versus-host disease, a complication in transplants where the newly transferred material attacks the recipient’s body. Takahiro Oto, associate professor of respiratory surgery at the state-run university hospital, said that this successful transplant of a lung’s middle lobe from a living donor would have great impact in the future, especially in saving the lives of babies who need lung transplants but are not able to undergo other types of lung transplants.
[via Asia One]
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