Florida Hospital Poised to Perform First Lung Transplant
Florida Hospital has established the only lung transplant program in Central Florida and placed their first patient for a lung transplant on a waiting list, the hospital said Monday.
The new lung transplantation program at Florida Hospital means patients in need of a lung transplant will no longer have to travel long distances to receive a life-saving organ.
“In organ transplantation, much of the hard work for the patient comes after the surgery, with many follow up appointments and regulation of medications,” said Dr. Andres Pelaez, Florida Hospital medical director of lung transplantation. “It is so important for patients and their families to get these services close to home so they can be near the team of experts that is familiar with their medical history.”
In 2010, Pelaez came to Florida Hospital from Emory University to establish the Florida Hospital lung transplant program.
The latest addition to the Florida Hospital heart and lung transplant teams is Dr. Hartmuth Bittner, surgical director of the heart and lung transplant program. Bittner has vast heart and lung transplant experience and comes from Germany where he was a Professor of Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgery at the University of Leipzig.
About 10 to 20 patients each year have to leave Central Florida to receive lung transplant services in other parts of the state.
Six months ago, Florida Hospital Transplant Institute performed the first heart transplant in Central Florida.