Our mission is to improve the lives of lung transplant patients and their families.

Waiting for “the call”


Once you have been evaluated, have begun a physical therapy program, and have met the qualifications for a transplant, you will probably be waitlisted for lungs shortly thereafter. The timing of this can vary. Some patients’ cases are expedited, while others have the luxury of training to get into better physical shape before surgery. Once you are listed, the waiting period can vary from a few hours to several years. Your health might range from being stable enough to wait at home to being on life support at the transplant center.

Time on the waiting list is only one consideration in determining the likelihood that you will receive a call. Other factors that will be considered when your name comes up include tissue typing, the absence or presence of antibodies, chest cavity size, and your lung allocation score. There is no way to tell when organs will become available.

For example, if Chris, who weighs 200 pounds and is 6’5,”is first on the list and has been waiting longer than Lela, who is 5’4” and 115 pounds, but the lungs that become available are from a small-framed person and would fit Lela’s chest size better, then the lungs would go to her.

For more information, read “How your lung Composite Allocation Score (CAS) is calculated and used” about Lung Allocation from the Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network (OPTN).

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