Lung Transplant Director Discusses the Path To No 1,000

On July 7, 2019, Dr. Michael Mulligan performed UW Medicine's 1,000th lung transplant.

"Our program has been a high-volume center for quite some time," said Mulligan, who oversees that service and is a professor of surgery at the University of Washington School of Medicine. "When I came here in 1998 to look for a job, the one-year survival (for lung-transplant patients) was about 60%. ... Now it's more than 90%."

In some cases, the team uses ECMO (extracorporeal membrane oxygenation), a machine that temporarily takes over lung function for people who are gravely ill but not yet matched to an organ donor. The mechanical support is used as a bridge to transplant in upward of 10% of UW Medicine's lung-transplant candidates, he said.

Read more about UW Medicine's milestone transplant.