A surgeon from China rejected a pair of donated blackened lungs that came from a heavy-smoker.
Chen Jingyu, a lung transplant surgeon from Wuxi People’s Hospital in Jiangsu, China immediately rejected the lungs after seeing the damage which was also captured in a graphic video posted on the doctor’s Weibo account.
The lungs were extracted from a 52-year-old man who had been a heavy smoker for 30 years, according to Daily Mail. The man reportedly had multiple lung diseases.
“Many smokers in this country have lungs which look like this,” Chen said. “Our team decided to reject these lungs for transplant. If you’re a heavy smoker, your lungs may not be accepted even if you choose to donate them after death. Look at these lungs — do you still have the courage to smoke?”
The man did not undergo a CT scan before he died. His lungs were donated after he was proclaimed brain dead, Chen said.
“Initial oxygenation index tests were okay, but when we harvested the organs, we realized we wouldn’t be able to use them,” he said.
Chen added there are strict standards to follow when accepting donated lungs from smokers.
“[We would accept] lungs from people under 60 years of age who have only recently died, minor infections in the lungs and relatively clean X-rays are also acceptable,” he said. “If the above conditions are met, we would consider transplanting the lungs.”
According to the World Health Organization via Fox News, over 300 million people in China are smokers, which is nearly one-third of the world’s population. In the data gathered by the WHO, China had consumed nearly 2.3 trillion cigarettes in 2009.
Around 3,000 people die every day in China from tobacco-related illnesses or one in approximately every 30 seconds. If this continues, the WHO reported the number of deaths will increase to 3 million by 2050.
Feature Image Screenshot via 陈静瑜肺腑之言