July 22, 2015
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Lung transplants significantly improve quality of life

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Patients experience significant improvements in health-related quality of life measures after receiving a lung transplantation, according to study results.

The researchers reported no significant difference in improvements in health-related quality of life measures regarding patient age.

“We found that recipient age has a minimal effect on the [health-related quality of life (HRQL)] benefits of transplantation, and that age accounts for very little of the variability in quality-adjusted survival after transplant,” Lianne G. Singer, MD, an associate professor at the University of Toronto, and colleagues wrote.

Singer and colleagues conducted a prospective cohort study and obtained 326 HRQL measurements in adults with advanced lung disease who subsequently underwent lung transplantation.

The researchers used the St. George’s Respiratory Questionnaire, 36-Item Short-Form Health Survey (SF-36), EQ-5D, Standard Gamble and Visual Analog Score to determine quality of life pre-transplant as well as post-transplant.

HRQL measures improved after lung transplantation (St. George’s change of –47 units; SF-36 physical component summary score 17.7; EQ-5D 0.27; Standard Gamble 0.48 and Visual Analog Score 44).

The researchers report the results may not be applicable to all transplant programs and is subject to limitations of a single center cohort center.

The researchers stressed there should be no age nor diagnosis discrimination in lung transplants.

“Our data suggest that age and diagnosis should not be used to discriminate between potential lung transplant recipients, if improvement in HRQL is a desired goal of transplantation,” the researchers wrote. “However, a relatively high mortality rate still undermines the overall success of lung transplantation. It is hoped that future advances in the care of lung transplant patients will yield even more impressive benefits.” – by Ryan McDonald

Disclosure: The researchers report no relevant financial disclosures.