Lung Transplant Facts

The effects of lung disease on those that have developed the condition go far beyond difficulty breathing.

Although the lungs are among the strongest organs in the body, the detrimental effects of lung diseases like chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) or interstitial lung disease (ILD) inevitably lead to a complete loss of lung function.

This leads to many looking to a lung transplant as the answer to their disease and the extension of their life.

With this being the case, these lung transplant facts can help sufferers understand the truth about lung transplants.

What is the Life Expectancy and Cost of a Lung Transplant?

Cost of a Lung Transplant

Of course, the cost of a lung transplant procedure will vary greatly depending on a multitude of factors, but here are some key facts about lung transplant medical costs:

  • If you have insurance and the procedure is covered, you will likely have to pay for the deductibles and co-pays for the actual surgery.
  • There will also be costs associated with your pre-transplant evaluations and screenings.
  • The surgery will add costs for the surgeons, physicians, radiologists, anesthesiologists and other clinical staff.
  • Finally, there are post-surgery costs with prescription medications and rehabilitation.

There are also non-medical costs that you should consider:

  • You will need to pay for food, lodging, and transportation to and from the transplant center before and after your surgery.
  • Most people must purchase a last-minute plane ticket to get to the hospital when an organ becomes available quickly.
  • If you are employed, you will also need to take time off from work.

Survival Rates of a Lung Transplant

A lung transplant is an invasive procedure. Two of your largest, most vital organs are being removed and replaced.

Due to this, the survival and success rates will vary greatly. However, here are a few things to consider about lung transplants:

  • About 78 percent of patients survive the first year.
  • 63 percent of patients survive three years and only about half of lung transplant patients survive five years.
  • Rejection and infection are the largest complications resulting from a lung transplant.
  • Your new lungs are seen as foreign objects by your immune system and will likely try to fight them.