Objective: The purpose of this study was to recognize clinically meaningful differences in lung transplant outcomes based on local or distant lung procurement. This could identify if the lung allocation policy change would influence patient outcomes. Methods: This single-center retrospective cohort study analyzed adult patients who underwent lung transplant from 2006 to 2017. Donor and recipient data were abstracted from a collaborative, prospective registry shared by our local organ procurement organization, and tertiary medical center. Short-term outcomes, 1-year survival, and hospitalization costs were compared between local and distant lung transplants defined by donor service area. Results: Of the 722 lung transplants performed, 392 (54%) had local donors and 330 (46%) had distant donors. Donors were similar in age and cause of death. Recipients were significantly different in diagnosis and local recipients had lower median lung allocation scores (local, 37.3 and distant, 44.9; P < .01). Distant lung transplants had longer total ischemic times (local, 231 ± 52 minutes and distant, 313 ± 48 minutes; P < .01). The rate of major complications, length of hospital stay, and 1-year survival were similar between groups. Distant lung transplants were associated with higher median overall cost (local, $183,542 and distant, $229,871; P < .01). Local lung transplants were more likely to be performed during daytime (local, 333 out of 392 [85%] and distant, 291 out of 330 [61%]; P < .01). Conclusions: Local lung transplants are associated with shorter ischemic times, lower cost, and greater likelihood of daytime surgery. Short- and intermediate-term outcomes are similar for lung transplants from local and distant donors. The new lung allocation policy, with higher proportion of distant lung transplants, is likely to incur greater costs but provide similar outcomes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1284-1293.e4
JournalJournal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2021


  • lung transplant


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