Bionic Lungs – They DO Exist!

I realize that this has limited application now, but for the most critically ill of people waiting for new lungs, this is a significant advance.  Looks like it is making its way to the U.S. now (or something similar)…

The real key problem with longer wait times & why some centers push to list early is clear from this article. Often, actual oxygen needs & use can sometimes exceed what can be provided in the person’s own home.  Or other medical issues render the person unable to stay at home & instead require treatment in the hospital as they await their new gift.

This advance highlighted in the article is important because the person is not just sitting there hooked to high flow oxygen in a hospital bed, losing mobility & strength on a daily basis.   Standard treatments like respirators & ECMO (for the most critically ill) make those awaiting transplants vulnerable to other problems.

This is truly amazing, especially for those of us with both restrictive (taking air in) & obstructive (getting air out)  breathing issues.  In end-stage lung diseases like mine, LAM; air trapping becomes a larger & serious issue. My body cannot filter the carbon dioxide out as efficiently.   It always was a big issue for me, in fact, it was what I felt was often at the root of some of my lung collapses not healing as quickly.

This advance is a true lifeline for those who need it most – when they need it most…

UPDATE: 12/27/15: See this press release, they are actively seeking FDA approval to launch this in 2017.


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