Scientific article
Case report
Open access

Contralateral Pneumonectomy 27 Years After Right Single-Lung Transplantation for Emphysema: A Case Report

Published inThe American journal of case reports, vol. 23, e936748
Publication date2022-08-02
First online date2022-08-02

BACKGROUND: Following single-lung transplantation, native lung inflation can progressively develop in patients with emphysema.

CASE REPORT: A 74-year-old female patient presented with worsening dyspnea during daily activities. She underwent a right single-lung transplantation for emphysema 27 years ago. Despite recurrent episodes of acute rejection of the grafted lung, the patient had satisfactory recovery of physical fitness during that period and did not report any serious complications or respiratory symptoms. Her recent dyspnea was due to hyperinflation of the native emphysematous lung with mediastinal shift, reduction of venous blood return, and compression of the grafted lung. Although surgical lung volume reduction had resulted in temporary functional improvement 2 years ago, a completion contralateral pneumonectomy was deemed necessary to allow re-expansion of the grafted lung. After anesthesia induction and placement of a double-lumen tube, selective ventilation of the left emphysematous native lung confirmed the absence of gas exchange based on near-zero end-expiratory carbon dioxide fraction. During selective ventilation of the grafted lung, satisfactory gas exchange was achieved and pneumonectomy proceeded uneventfully under minimally-invasive thoracotomy. Immediately after anesthesia emergence and tracheal extubation, the patient experienced respiratory improvement. Continuous thoracic epidural blockade allowed pain-free mobilization and respiratory therapy to facilitate re-expansion of the grafted lung.

CONCLUSIONS: After single-lung transplantation in COPD patients, native lung hyperinflation is a well-described rare complication. Lung volume reduction including pneumonectomy can be considered a valuable treatment option.

  • Aged
  • Dyspnea
  • Emphysema
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lung Transplantation
  • Pneumonectomy / methods
  • Postoperative Complications / surgery
  • Pulmonary Emphysema / surgery
Citation (ISO format)
BOULOS, Georges et al. Contralateral Pneumonectomy 27 Years After Right Single-Lung Transplantation for Emphysema: A Case Report. In: The American journal of case reports, 2022, vol. 23, p. e936748. doi: 10.12659/AJCR.936748
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Article (Published version)
ISSN of the journal1941-5923

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Creation08/24/2022 1:45:00 PM
First validation08/24/2022 1:45:00 PM
Update time03/16/2023 10:16:20 AM
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