Receiving Multiple Lung Transplants
Unfortunately many of us know that the only “cure” to idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) is a lung transplant. Even then, I use the word cure very loosely as receiving a transplant has a lot of difficulties with it and essentially, it can be viewed as swapping one disease for another when it comes to post-transplant living. However, for those with end-stage lung disease, a transplant can restore their health to a whole new level.
Since being diagnosed with IPF, I’ve connected with many other young adults in the lung transplant community. There aren’t many who have IPF (although I’ve come across a few) and most of them have cystic fibrosis (CF) or pulmonary hypertension (PH). Regardless of the disease we all have, we have the commonality of either receiving or needing a double lung transplant in future. Despite not knowing many of these other young adults in person (only online), I feel very connected to them and thankful they’re in my circle of support.
That being said, sometimes their stories leave me dealing with an abundance of “feelings” and I am experiencing that right now. How do you feel about receiving multiple lung transplants?
Before being thrust into the transplant world, and getting to know and love many who are currently waiting for lungs; I’d be in support of people receiving as many transplants as they need to survive as long as they can. However, now that I know the scarcity of lungs and how hard people fight to survive the wait for lungs, I am having a hard time with the answer to the above question. I know a young adult who is now waiting for his third lung transplant in 5 years. Of course I want him to survive, and receive the perfect pair of lungs, everyone deserves this. However, in the back of my mind are the friends who are waiting in the ICU right now for their first pair of lungs and somehow this feels unfair.
Is it actually unfair? I’m not sure because the match for lungs has to be perfect, so it is up to the physicians and medical team to give the lungs to the perfect candidate. However, it is hard to accept that someone may receive a third lung transplant in 5 years, when some people are fighting so hard for the first one.
What do you think about people receiving multiple lung transplants? I’d love to hear from you! I want to be happy for this young adult who just signed consent to be listed for the 3rd transplant, but my mind wanders to the friends who are fighting so hard for their first one. It is such a tough place to be in.
Log in to reply.