3 years ago

Pulmonary Function and Exercise Capacity in Patients With Flat Chests After Lung Transplantation

Severe chest wall deformation is generally a contraindication for lung transplantation; however, it is not known whether patients with flat chests have reduced postoperative exercise capacity and pulmonary function. This study’s purpose was to investigate the relationship between preoperative thoracic shape and postoperative exercise capacity and pulmonary function in patients undergoing lung transplantation. Methods Twenty recipients who underwent successful bilateral living-donor lobar lung transplantation were evaluated. To analyze postoperative graft function in relation to preoperative thoracic shape, 40 donor grafts implanted into 20 recipients were divided into two groups: flat chest group and normal chest group. Flat chest is diagnosed when the thoracic anteroposterior diameter to transverse diameter ratio is 1:3 or less. Results The ratio of the postoperative forced vital capacity to the preoperatively estimated forced vital capacity was significantly lower in the flat chest group than in the normal chest group 1 year after lung transplantation (p = 0.002). However, there were no significant differences in postoperative 6-minute walk distances between the two groups. Furthermore, the thoracic anteroposterior diameter to transverse diameter ratio in the flat chest group significantly increased after lung transplantation (p = 0.02). Conclusions Although postoperative pulmonary function was significantly poorer for patients with flat chests than for patients with normal chests, their postoperative exercise capacity was equivalent. We also found that flat chest severity significantly improved after lung transplantation. Our study, the first investigating postoperative functional status in patients with flat chests, clearly shows that it is possible to perform lung transplantation in such patients with acceptable outcomes.

Publisher URL: www.sciencedirect.com/science

DOI: S0003497517308573

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