Conclusions

As of November 1996 the National Transplant Waiting List showed that, in the United States, 2296 patients were listed for lung transplantation and 233 patients for heart-lung transplantation. Over the previous 12 months, 657 patients had undergone either single- or double-lung transplantation, and 65 patients had received heart-lung transplants. Better postoperative care has contributed significantly to the steady improvement in results. One-year survival rates are now approaching 85 per cent for single-lung transplantation, 75 to 80 per cent for double-lung transplantation, and 60 to 65 per cent for heart-lung transplantation. The lack of donor organs remains the main limiting factor preventing wider use of this therapeutic modality in the treatment of patients with endstage lung disease.

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