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Indian-origin doctor performs 1st lung transplant on Covid-19 patient

Chicago: Surgeons led by an Indian-origin doctor have given a new set of lungs to a young woman with severe lung damage from the coronavirus, a surgery believed to be the first of its kind in the US since the pandemic began.

Northwestern Medicine in Chicago said the recipient is a woman in her 20s who would not have survived without the transplant.

She is in intensive care and recovering from the operation after being on lung and heart assistance devices for two months, The Washington Post reported.

Ankit Bharat, chief of thoracic surgery and surgical director of Northwestern’s lung transplant program, said organ transplantation may become more frequent for victims of the most severe forms of COVID-19.

“This is one of the toughest transplants I’ve done,” he said. “This was truly one of the most challenging cases.” Meerut-born Bharat said.

The disease caused by the new coronavirus most commonly attacks the respiratory system but also can inflict damage on kidneys, hearts, blood vessels and the neurological system.

“I certainly expect some of these patients will have such severe lung injury that they will not be able to carry on without transplant,” said Dr Bharat, who performed the operation Friday.

“This could serve as a lifesaving intervention,” the paper quoted him as saying.

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