Outcomes of Lung Transplantation From Hepatitis C Viremic Donors

Selena S. Li, Asishana Osho, Philicia Moonsamy, Stanley Wolfe, Mauricio A. Villavicencio, Nathaniel Langer, Thoralf M. Sundt, Masaki Funamoto

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Background: Direct-acting antiviral (DAA) therapy for hepatitis C virus (HCV) has encouraged lung transplantation with HCV positive donors. Early trials have been promising; however, nationwide data have not been previously examined. Methods: The United Network for Organ Sharing registry was queried for adult patients receiving lung transplants from 2016 to 2019. We excluded multiorgan transplants, incomplete data, and loss to follow-up. Nucleic acid testing (NAT) determined HCV status. Propensity matching was performed for comparison of outcomes. Results: Hepatitis C virus NAT-positive lungs were transplanted in 189 patients, compared with 9511 recipients of NAT-negative lungs. The HCV NAT-positive donors were younger (mean 33 vs 35 years, P = .017) with higher rates of PaO2/FiO2 greater than 300 (83.6% vs 76.5%, P = .029). Recipients of NAT-positive lungs had lower lung allocation scores (mean 39.3 vs 42.4, P = .009). Distance traveled was significantly further for HCV viremic donor lungs (mean 416 vs 206 miles, P < .001). Kaplan-Meier survival analysis demonstrated no difference in survival (P = .56). There were no differences in airway dehiscence (P = .629), acute rejection (P > .999), or reintubation (P = .304). At mean follow-up of 395 days, 63 recipients of NAT-positive lungs (40%) seroconverted, 14 with viremia. One-year mortality rates among seroconverted patients was 6% and did not differ significantly from 14% in nonseroconverted patients or 13.2% in recipients of HCV-negative lungs. Conclusions: Short-term outcomes of lung transplantation from HCV viremic donors are promising, with no difference in early complications or survival. The effects of seroconversion and long-term outcomes including chronic rejection and infection need to be further explored.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1598-1607
Number of pages10
JournalAnnals of Thoracic Surgery
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2022


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