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Five episodes of EVLP for lung transplants

According to statistics released to the Medical Independent (MI), there was one episode of EVLP for lung transplantation in 2015, three episodes in 2016 and one in 2017.

A spokesperson for the Ireland East Hospital Group (IEHG) told MI that EVLP is considered for “organs donated after cardiac death where there are logistical challenges or suitability of organs is considered borderline for transplantation”.

Overall, the number of lung transplantations has been “consistent” over the last four-to-five years, according to the IEHG. In 2017, there were 36 lung transplants in Ireland, compared with 35 and 36 in each of the previous two years. As of 31 May, there were 39 patients on the lung transplant waiting list.

“EVLP has been consistently available, therefore no transplant was not performed due to the non-availability of EVLP,” noted the IEHG spokesperson.

 “The Mater Misericordiae University Hospital currently has a retrieval team. However, retrieval of organs can impact on other activity because organ retrieval and transplantation is given top priority,” they added. “A submission has been made through the national estimates process for further resources for a dedicated on-call team which will limit the impact on daily ongoing activity. Progression of the business cases to have a dedicated retrieval team in the MMUH will make it easier to use EVLP and therefore maybe recondition some lungs not considered for use currently.”

The spokesperson said EVLP extends the possibility of lung transplant within the Irish population. “To date, the programme has been successful in conversion to donation and is reviewed rigorously, as are all transplant programmes.”

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