Home Health News Lung transplant recipient at University of Michigan gets COVID-19 from donor, dies two months later

Lung transplant recipient at University of Michigan gets COVID-19 from donor, dies two months later

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ANN ARBOR, MI — A girl who obtained a double lung transplant at the University of Michigan died two months later after contracting COVID-19 from the donor’s lungs, in response to a examine within the American Journal of Transplantation.

This is the primary recognized case of donor-to-recipient transmission of COVID-19, in response to Daniel Kaul, the examine’s writer and professor of inside drugs at UM.

The organ donor was a girl from the higher Midwest who suffered a extreme mind damage in a automotive crash, the examine states, including that the girl shortly progressed to mind demise throughout a two-day hospital admission.

Doctors carried out COVID-19 testing inside 48 hours of buying the organs for transplant and testing got here again unfavorable, in response to the examine. CT scans of the lungs confirmed no proof to recommend COVID-19, and nostril and throat swabs had been unfavorable, Kaul mentioned.

“Family was not aware of any donor symptoms or exposure suggestive of COVID-19, so (the donor) was asymptomatic as best we can tell,” Kaul mentioned.

The lung recipient was examined for COVID-19 12 hours earlier than the transplant and her take a look at got here again unfavorable, the examine notes. There had been no problems with the process, however the recipient developed a number of problems days after.

The recipient then obtained an preliminary constructive COVID-19 take a look at, so docs checked residual fluid they’d obtainable from deep within the donor lungs, which was obtained previous to buying the organs, and that examined constructive, as effectively, Kaul mentioned.

The recipient died 61 days after the transplant, in response to the examine. She was nonetheless COVID-19 constructive 60 days after the transplant, the examine states.

Unexpected transmission of an infection from donor to recipient is rare, occurring in fewer than 1% of transplant recipients, in response to the examine. However, rising pathogens create explicit challenges in assessing illness transmission threat, together with latest illnesses like H1N1, West Nile virus, Ebola and Zika, the examine notes.

Four days after the transplant operation, a thoracic surgeon examined constructive for COVID-19, in response to the examine. The surgeon was not present at the time of procurement however ready the lungs for implantation and carried out the transplant process, the examine states.

No different uncovered health care employee was identified with COVID-19 linked to this occasion, the examine states. No different organs had been donated within the case and the examine has no data on the danger of transmission to non-lung recipients.

This type of incident shouldn’t make anybody fearful of donating life-saving organs, Kaul mentioned.

“I think it’s very important that patients with organ failure waiting for a transplant do not take this as a reason to turn down an organ,” Kaul mentioned. “This is a rare event and the first noted in almost 40,000 transplants done in calendar year 2020. The risks of organ failure not treated by transplant is far greater than the risk of getting COVID-19 from a donor.”

There was a big discount within the quantity of transplants at UM, and throughout the nation in spring 2020, however it has since returned to regular ranges, Kaul mentioned.

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