Study objectives: Respiratory complications are frequent after lung transplantation (LTx), and many of these complications have the potential to cause hemoptysis. However, surprisingly, only a few isolated cases of hemoptysis have been reported in LTx recipients. Here, we describe a series of patients who underwent LTx at our center who developed hemoptysis during their postoperative course.
Setting: A tertiary care university hospital.
Results: Of 197 LTx recipients, hemoptysis developed in 15 over a 16-year period. The pulmonary circulation as well as the systemic circulation were involved in the mechanism of hemoptysis. Six patients had moderate or minimal hemoptysis, while nine patients had life-threatening hemoptysis, which occurred during the first year after LTx in all cases. Active necrotizing ischemic airway injury was present in five of the nine patients with life-threatening hemoptysis. Eight of those nine patients died as a result of hemoptysis. Overall, hemoptysis was the cause of death in 4.5% of patients who underwent LTx at our institution.
Conclusion: In our series of transplant patients, hemoptysis was not rare and was associated with a high rate of mortality.