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Expert care for advanced lung transplant

The Center for Advanced Heart and Lung Disease and lung transplant program at Baylor University Medical Center, part of Baylor Scott & White Health, offers sophisticated diagnostic testing, innovative therapies and skilled lung transplant experts for patients with advanced chronic lung disease.

Since performing the first lung transplant in Texas in 1990, our team continues to be a leading force in lung disease treatment and outcomes. Baylor Dallas is not only home to one of the busiest adult extra corporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) programs in North Texas, but also home to the region's only ECMO deployment program. Also, Baylor Dallas is ranked as one of America's top hospitals by U.S. News & World Report.

We are actively involved in research to improve outcomes after lung transplantation. To learn more about our lung transplant outcomes, visit SRTR.org.

Watch the video of David P. Mason, MD, chief of thoracic surgery and lung transplantation at Baylor Scott & White Health, as he discusses surgical options for lung transplantation and the best candidates for lung transplantation.

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Center for Advanced Heart & Lung Disease

The Center for Advanced Heart & Lung Disease provides diagnosis and comprehensive treatment of individuals with chronic lung disease, connective tissue disease, cystic fibrosis, interstitial lung disease and pulmonary fibrosis. We perform advanced diagnostic procedures and highly specialized evaluations for the proper identification and treatment of complex lung disorders. The treatment team including physicians who specialize in advanced lung disease consults together with other medical, surgical and pulmonary rehabilitation specialists to devise a treatment plan that gives hope for our patients to receive the best possible outcome and improved quality of life. 

Among the advanced treatments and clinical research provided are:

  • Clinical trials in the treatment of usual interstitial pneumonia (pulmonary fibrosis)
  • Minimally invasive lung volume reduction surgery (LVRS) for emphysema
  • Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) for severe respiratory failure and adult respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS)
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Several factors determine candidacy for lung transplant

Our transplant team evaluates patients on a case-by-case basis

The patient's physiologic, or functional, age and overall health determine candidacy. Advanced age (over 65 years old) is a risk for shorter survival after lung transplantation—primarily due to other illnesses. Ordinarily, patients older than 65 are considered for lung transplantation if they are otherwise healthy, except for lung disease.

Single or double lung transplant may be the best course of treatment for a number of serious lung conditions:

  • Emphysema
  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
  • Pulmonary fibrosis/Interstitial Lung Disease
  • Cystic fibrosis
  • Pulmonary hypertension
  • Bronchiolitis
  • Bronchiectasis
  • Lymphangioleiomyomatosis
  • Sarcoidosis
  • Occupational lung disease

Our lung transplant specialists

We performed our first lung transplant in Texas in 1990 and have continued to grow our lung disease treatment expertise and experience.

Our experienced lung transplant team includes:

  • Coordinators
  • Nurses
  • Social workers
  • Nutritionists
  • Physical therapists
  • Respiratory therapists
  • Transplant pulmonologist
  • Thoracic surgeons
  • Cardiac anesthesiologists on the medical staff

Find a Transplant Specialists


Lung transplant leadership

Todd Grazia, MD

Chief of Transplant Pulmonology, Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas

David Mason, MD

Chief of Lung Transplantation and Thoracic Surgery

Randall Rosenblatt, MD

Chief of Pulmonary Medicine

Transplant locations
Dallas
Visit location
Outreach Locations
Learn More

Frisco
Frisco Blue Star
3800 Gaylord Pkwy
Frisco, TX, 75034

Tyler
1321 S Beckham Ave
Tyler, TX 75701

Frequently asked questions about lung transplant

 

Our transplant team evaluates patients on a case-by-case basis and focuses on a patient's physiologic age (functional age) an​d overall health for determination of candidacy. Advanced age (over 65 years old) is a risk for shorter survival after lung transplantation—primarily as a consequence of other illnesses. Ordinarily, patients older than 65 are considered for lung transplantation if, with the exception of lung disease, they are otherwise healthy.

Yes. A single or double lung transplant may be the best course for cystic fibrosis treatment.

Yes. Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) can be treated with lung transplantation.

We have a financial coordinator who will help you and your family with financial related questions or concerns regarding your transplant coverage.

The use of a single versus double lung transplant involves several factors. Recipient age, type of lung disease, presence of pulmonary hypertension and severity of a patient's illness are the main factors. Donor availability also influences the decision to perform a single lung transplant—as many circumstances of organ donors make only one lung acceptable for transplantation.

In general, older patients do equally well with single lung transplantation as compared to double lung transplantation. In most circumstances for patients younger than 55 years old, a double lung transplant is preferred.

The duration a patient may wait for a lung transplant is primarily determined by illness severity—which is calculated as the Lung Allocation Score (LAS). Sicker patients with higher LAS scores are ranked higher on the wait list. Other factors that influence donor compatibility include rare blood types, preformed antibodies and lung size, and may also affect wait times.

Once listed for lung transplantation, you will be followed closely in the transplant clinic and your score will be updated routinely to determine your sequence on the wait list.

After your doctor refers you to Baylor Dallas for lung disease treatment, you'll undergo a series of tests and counseling to determine if you are a candidate for a lung transplant. The Lung Transplant Selection Committee will review the results to evaluate if you meet the lung transplant requirements. If so, you will be approved and placed on the list for transplant. Once on the waiting list, you'll be assigned a standard Lung Allocation Score (LAS). Lungs are allocated to recipients according to the lung allocation score, blood type and geographic matching between donor and recipient.

Once referred by your doctor to Baylor, a carefully coordinated set of tests will be scheduled to determine your candidacy. You will undergo extensive medical testing of your heart, lungs and gastrointestinal system. The tests are performed at Baylor University Medical Center, part of Baylor Scott & White Health. You will be counseled extensively about the process of transplantation and what to expect from lung function and quality of life after transplant. The Baylor team members with whom you will meet include transplant pulmonologists, surgeons and cardiologists on the medical staff, along with nutritionists, social workers, financial counselors and physical therapists, among others.

Once listed, you must be in contact and available within a three-hour radius of Baylor Dallas for a donor offer. Our transplant coordinator will contact you and provide all instructions. If you live at a farther distance, our transplant coordinator may arrange private air transportation. During your pre-transplant clinic visits, your transplant coordinator will make sure that you and your family know what to expect immediately before and after surgery. During transplantation, your coordinator will deliver regular updates to your family. For more detailed information, please consult the patient handbook.

The cost of lung transplantation is ultimately a life-long expense, in a large part due to the daily cost of anti-rejection medications and routine surveillance of the organ's function and well-being. It is essential for patients with chronic lung disease to maintain health insurance.

Patients who have undergone lung transplantation report a dramatic improvement in their quality of life. Following recovery from lung surgery, patients no longer require supplemental oxygen and are able to return to an active lifestyle with considerably more independence with their daily lives. On average, full recovery and physical rehabilitation following lung transplantation surgery takes 2-3 months.

Immediately after transplant, you will be brought to the intensive care unit where you typically stay for a few days. You will have many tubes and drains after surgery that will be removed over the first few days after transplant. Your pain will be controlled with intravenous and oral pain medications. Physical therapy will begin immediately after surgery in the intensive care unit. Prior to discharge, you will be given a list of your medications and their importance and instructed how to appropriately take them. On average, you will be in the hospital for two weeks after transplant.

Once leaving the hospital, your lung transplant team will manage all aspects of your medical care for at least the first year after surgery. At these visits, blood tests, radiologic imaging and bronchoscopy (telescope into the windpipe) biopsies are performed routinely. These biopsies are performed on an outpatient basis to evaluate for rejection, a potential response of your body against the transplanted lung. Blood tests are performed to monitor the levels of your anti-rejection medications. After one year, we coordinate your medical care with your primary care physician or pulmonologist. Routine visits to Baylor Dallas will continue to be necessary throughout the remainder of your life. Visits become more spread out as time from transplant progresses.

 

Patient education resources

 

There are a variety of support and educational resources offered through Baylor and outside organizations, which can help patients and their families better understand and cope with lung disease and the transplantation process.

  • Register to become an organ donor

    By becoming an organ donor, you could save a life. Or more. With more than 120,000 people on organ transplant waiting lists in the United States, organ donation needs are critical.

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