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Leading the Way: UPMC Surgeons Perform the Most Lung Transplants at Any U.S. Hospital in 2010

PITTSBURGH, March 29, 2011 – UPMC performed 131 lung transplants in 2010, the most at any transplant center in the United States and a record for the hospital system.

“We have an experienced, dedicated, multidisciplinary team in the lung transplant program and our number of transplants reflects that,” said Joseph Pilewski, M.D., transplant pulmonologist and medical director of the UPMC Lung Transplantation Program.  “We are proud of the work we’ve done to build a strong program that provides an opportunity for increased survival and improved quality of life to patients with life-threatening respiratory diseases.”

UPMC surgeons performed more than 1,300 lung transplants since its lung transplant program began in 1982. In each of the past four years, the program has performed more than 100 transplants.

The UPMC team is known for treating high-risk patients who may be turned away from other transplant centers, and for pioneering minimally invasive techniques for lung transplant. Patients who need lung transplants can suffer from a variety of illnesses, including pulmonary fibrosis, cystic fibrosis, pulmonary hypertension and emphysema.

“These are serious, debilitating conditions and our goal is to help people have a better quality of life and a better chance at survival,” said Yoshiya Toyoda , M.D., Ph.D., director of UPMC’s cardiothoracic transplantation program.

In all, UPMC performed 516 organ transplants last year, according to data compiled by the United Network for Organ Sharing.

About UPMC’s transplant programs

UPMC’s transplant programs are among the world’s largest and are internationally renowned for their influence on the field of transplantation. For nearly 30 years, UPMC has been providing care to adult and pediatric transplant patients through services at the Thomas E. Starzl Transplantation Institute, the UPMC Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery and the Children’s Hillman Center for Pediatric Transplantation. Today, UPMC has performed more than 17,000 transplants, including heart, lung, intestinal, kidney, liver, pancreas and multiple-organ transplants, along with heart assist device implantation. UPMC also partners with the University of Pittsburgh to advance basic science and clinically applied research, as well as to support the teaching and training of transplant specialists worldwide.

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