Double lung transplant performed on patient with vaping illness

Amidst a spate of vaping-related illnesses and deaths in the U.S., doctors at a Detroit hospital performed a double lung transplant on a 17-year-old boy whose lungs were severely damaged from vaping.

Doctors at Henry Ford Hospital said they believe the procedure is the first double lung transplant in the world for a patient with vaping-damaged lungs.

“It would be nice if it’s the last — if the epidemic of acute lung injury can be brought under control,” said David Christiani, Elkan Blout Professor of Environmental Genetics at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, in a November 11, 2019 Associated Press article. Christiani was not involved in the transplant.

Over the past few months, more than 2,000 people in the U.S. have gotten sick from vaping, and at least 40 have died.

Christiani said that he’s not sure if there will be more double lung transplants due to vaping illnesses, noting that it depends on the availability of donor lungs and the long-term effects of vaping.

Read the Associated Press article: Vaping-related lung transplant performed at Detroit hospital

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Why is vaping sickening and killing people? Experts don’t know yet. (Harvard Chan School news)