Surgeons in the US used chest implants and artificial lungs to stabilize the patient until both affected lungs were transplanted.
Why this happened, Live Science tells.
A 34-year-old resident of the state of Missouri named David Bauer started smoking cigarettes at the age of 21. He smoked about a pack a day until he switched to e-cigarettes in 2014.
“I thought vape was a healthier alternative, but honestly I think it’s even more addictive than cigarettes“, Bauer said.
|David Bauer is in the hospital. Photo: Northwestern Medicine|
In 2023, the man began to have shortness of breath, he was diagnosed with the flu. He developed a bacterial lung infection that did not respond to antibiotic treatment.
Bauer was admitted to a St. Louis hospital and connected to an ECMO (extracorporeal membrane oxygenation) machine, which does the work of the heart and lungs.
But the man’s condition worsened.
“Davey’s lungs were so badly infected that they began to “liquefy” – completely filled with pus“, said Doctor of Medical Sciences, pulmonologist Rade Tomich.
For Bauer to survive the transplant, it was important to clear his body of the infection. For this, it was necessary to remove the lungs.
A team of surgeons quickly developed a strategy to remove the infected lung and create an “artificial lung” to keep blood flowing to the heart, brain and other organs.
Surgeons needed a way to keep Bauer’s heart working, and that’s when the idea for breast implants was born.
“I never imagined we would be using breast implants to help a patient receive a lung transplant, but our team is known for taking on the toughest cases and thinking outside the box to save lives“, said the transplant specialist Bhart.
On May 26, the patient’s infected lungs were removed and his body immediately began to be cleansed of the infection.
Then Bauer began to be prepared for a two-lung transplant.
On May 28, the chest implants were removed and donor lungs were inserted.
After the transplant, Bauer spent several months in intensive care before being discharged to rehab.
“I am very proud to be the first patient to undergo this innovative procedure and I hope that this operation will pave the way for critically ill patients to receive lung transplants in the near future“, Bauer said.
Iryna Bura, “UP. Life”
Read also: “A patient who underwent a heart-lung transplant died in Lviv”