Lung transplantation can prolong and dramatically improve the quality of life for patients with severe end-stage, non-malignant pulmonary disease and no alternative treatment options.
The major center for lung transplantation in the New York tri-state area, the NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center Center for Lung Disease and Transplantation is one of the oldest in the United States — it was established in 1985, just three years after the first lung transplant was ever performed. Over the years, the center has earned a reputation for the depth of its clinical expertise and rigorous commitment to excellence. Studies at the center continue to improve treatment options, prevent or delay the progression of serious lung diseases, and improve the quality of life and survival for patients. These achievements have been most notable in the areas of emphysema, idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, pulmonary arterial hypertension, and cystic fibrosis.
Experts in every medical and surgical specialty relating to lung transplantation participate in the Lung Transplant Center. It draws upon the skills and expertise of not only surgeons, pulmonologists, immunologists and endocrinologists, but also nurse practitioners, registered nurses, physician's assistants, intensive care clinicians, rehabilitation medicine specialists, physical and respiratory therapists, social workers, psychiatrists, nutritionists, and financial counselors. The collaboration among these clinicians and research scientists leads to optimal patient care. In addition, the patient's referring physicians also continue to participate in the primary pulmonary care of their patients and are kept abreast of all stages of the transplant process by the transplant medical and surgical team.
The Lung Transplant Program has been in the vanguard of improving postoperative care by addressing the most significant risks to lung transplantation patients — rejection of the new "foreign" donor organ(s) and infections. Patients receive the newest and most effective anti-rejection drugs (immunosuppressants) and powerful antibiotic regimens.