Discrepancy between severity of lung impairment and seniority on the lung transplantation list.
ABSTRACT Organ allocation for lung transplantation, based mainly on accrued time on a waiting list, may not be an equitable system of organ allocation. To provide an objective view of the current practice concerning lung allocation, and timing for transplantation, we examined illness severity and list seniority in patients on a lung transplantation waiting list.
Adult patients awaiting lung transplantation underwent testing for mean pulmonary artery pressure (mPpa), maximum oxygen consumption (VO2 max), 6-minute walk distance (6MWD), forced expiratory volume in 1 second, mean partial pressure of carbon dioxide, partial pressure of oxygen/fractional concentration of inspired oxygen, and diffusing capacity of the lung for carbon monoxide. Relationships between physiological variables and waiting list rankings were then determined.
Thirty-four patients were tested and there was no correlation between time spent waiting on the list and mPpa (r=0.01; P=.94), VO2 max percentage predicted (r=0.07; P=.71), or 6MWD (r=0.15; P=.42). Many patients with functional impairments as indicated by low maximum VO2 or by short 6MWD are scheduled to receive their transplant after patients with levels that indicate a lower degree of risk. When compared with a hypothetical reranking based on mean Ppa, 24 of the 34 patients (71%) on our current waiting list were found to be 5 positions higher or lower than this new risk-based ranking. Sixteen patients (47%) were 10 or more positions away from their hypothetical severity-based ranking, and 9 (26%) were at least 15 positions out of place. Sixteen of the 34 patients were ranked lower than they would be based on a severity of illness using the pulmonary artery pressure alone, 17 were ranked higher than "should be" based on pulmonary artery mean, and only 1 patient (ranked in position 15) was appropriately positioned based on seniority and severity of disease based on PA mean.
Rank order for lung transplantation has no relationship with illness severity, and the discrepancy between disease severity and seniority on the lung waiting list may compromise overall outcomes in the lung transplantation population.
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ABSTRACT: The lung allocation score (LAS) was initiated in May 2005 to allocate lungs based on medical urgency and posttransplant survival. The purpose of this study was to determine if there is an association between an elevated LAS at the time of transplantation and increased postoperative morbidity and mortality. The United Network for Organ Sharing provided de-identified patient-level data. Analysis included lung transplant recipients aged >or= 12 years who received transplants between April 5, 2006, and December 31, 2007 (n = 3,836). Recipients were stratified into three groups: LAS < 50 (n = 3,161, 83.87%), LAS 50 to 75 (n = 411, 10.9%), and LAS >or= 75 (n = 197, 5.23%), referred to as low LAS (LLAS), intermediate LAS (ILAS), and high LAS (HLAS), respectively. The primary outcome was posttransplant graft survival at 1 year. Secondary outcomes included length of stay and in-hospital complications. HLAS recipients had significantly worse actuarial survival at 90 days and 1 year compared with LLAS recipients. When transplant recipients were stratified by disease etiology, a trend of decreased survival with elevated LAS was observed across all major causes of lung transplant. HLAS recipients were more likely to require dialysis or to have infections compared with LLAS recipients (P < .001). In addition, length of stay was higher in the HLAS group when compared with the LLAS group (P < .001). HLAS is associated with decreased survival and increased complications during the transplant hospitalization. Whereas the LAS has improved organ allocation through decreased waiting list deaths and waiting list times, lower survival and higher morbidity among HLAS recipients suggests that continued review of LAS scoring is needed to ensure optimal long-term transplant survival.Chest 10/2009; 137(3):651-7. · 5.85 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The lung allocation score restructured the distribution of scarce donor lungs for transplantation. The algorithm ranks waiting list patients according to medical urgency and expected benefit after transplantation. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the impact of the lung allocation score on short-term outcomes after lung transplantation. A multicenter retrospective cohort study was performed with data from 5 academic medical centers. Results of patients undergoing transplantation on the basis of the lung allocation score (May 4, 2005 to May 3, 2006) were compared with those of patients receiving transplants the preceding year before the lung allocation score was implemented (May 4, 2004, to May 3, 2005). The study reports on 341 patients (170 before the lung allocation score and 171 after). Waiting time decreased from 680.9 +/- 528.3 days to 445.6 +/- 516.9 days (P < .001). Recipient diagnoses changed with an increase in idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis and a decrease in emphysema and cystic fibrosis (P = .002). Postoperatively, primary graft dysfunction increased from 14.1% (24/170) to 22.9% (39/171) (P = .04) and intensive care unit length of stay increased from 5.7 +/- 6.7 days to 7.8 +/- 9.6 days (P = .04). Hospital mortality and 1-year survival were the same between groups (5.3% vs 5.3% and 90% vs 89%, respectively; P > .6) This multicenter retrospective review of short-term outcomes supports the fact that the lung allocation score is achieving its objectives. The lung allocation score reduced waiting time and altered the distribution of lung diseases for which transplantation was done on the basis of medical necessity. After transplantation, recipients have significantly higher rates of primary graft dysfunction and intensive care unit lengths of stay. However, hospital mortality and 1-year survival have not been adversely affected.The Journal of thoracic and cardiovascular surgery 01/2008; 135(1):166-71. · 3.41 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: This article reviews trends in thoracic organ transplantation based on OPTN/SRTR data from 1995 to 2004. The number of active waiting list patients for heart transplants continues to decline, primarily because there are fewer patients with coronary artery disease listed for transplantation. Waiting times for heart transplantation have decreased, and waiting list deaths also have declined, from 259 per 1000 patient-years at risk in 1995 to 156 in 2004. Fewer heart transplants were performed in 2004 than in 1995, but adjusted patient survival increased to 88% at 1 year and 73% at 5 years. Emphysema, idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis and cystic fibrosis were the most common indications among lung transplant recipients in 2004. Waiting time for lung transplantation decreased between 1999 and 2004. Waiting list mortality decreased to 134 per 1000 patient-years at risk in 2004. One-year survival following transplantation has improved significantly in the past decade. The number of combined heart-lung transplants performed in the United States remains low, with only 39 performed in 2004. Overall unadjusted survival, at 58% at 1 year and 40% at 5 years, is lower among heart-lung recipients than among either heart or lung recipients alone.American Journal of Transplantation 02/2006; 6(5 Pt 2):1188-97. · 6.19 Impact Factor