Transplanting thoracic COVID-19 positive donors: An institutional protocol and report of the first 14 cases.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

We present our institution's protocol for evaluating and transplanting thoracic organs from COVID-19 positive donors and report the outcomes to date. Hearts from donors testing positive for COVID-19 on any test were eligible for transplantation at our institution provided the donor exhibited no evidence of hypercoagulability or COVID-19 induced hyperinflammatory state during terminal hospitalization. Lungs were eligible if the donor first tested PCR positive on nasopharyngeal swab (NPS) for COVID-19 > 20 days prior to procurement and had a negative lower respiratory tract specimen. We performed 14 thoracic transplants in 13 recipients using organs from COVID-19 positive donors. None of the recipients or healthcare members acquired COVID-19. No recipients suffered unexpected acute rejection. Patient survival is 92% to date, with graft survival 93%. The use of hearts from COVID-19 positive donors may be safe and effective. Transplantation of lungs is unresolved but may be cautiously pursued under the restricted circumstances.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Eichenberger, EM; Coniglio, AC; Milano, C; Schroder, J; Bryner, BS; Spencer, PJ; Haney, JC; Klapper, J; Glass, C; Pavlisko, E; Dibernardo, L; Patel, CB; DeVore, AD; Reynolds, J; Wolfe, CR

Published Date

  • October 2022

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 41 / 10

Start / End Page

  • 1376 - 1381

PubMed ID

  • 35871114

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC9245398

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1557-3117

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/j.healun.2022.06.018


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States