COVID-19 Vaccination is Associated With Favorable Outcomes Among Lung Transplant Patients With Breakthrough Infections

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Background: There are limited data regarding the clinical efficacy of COVID-19 vaccines among lung transplant (LT) patients. Methods: We included all LT patients diagnosed with COVID-19 between March 1, 2020, and December 10, 2021 (n = 84; median age 55, range, 20-73 years; males 65.5%). The study group was divided into 3 groups based on the vaccination status (patients who did not complete the primary series for any of the vaccines: n = 58; those with 2 doses of messenger RNA (mRNA) or 1 dose of the adenoviral vector vaccine, vaccinated group: n = 16; those with at least 1 additional dose beyond the primary series, boosted group: n = 10). Results: Pulmonary parenchymal involvement on chest computed tomography scan was less common among the boosted group (P = .009). The proportion of patients with new or worsening respiratory failure was significantly lower among the vaccinated and boosted groups and these patients were significantly more likely to achieve the composite endpoint of oxygen-dependence free survival (P = .02). On multivariate logistic regression analysis, higher body mass index, restrictive lung disease as the transplant indication, and preinfection chronic lung allograft dysfunction were independently associated with acute or acute on chronic respiratory failure while being on therapeutic dose anticoagulation and having received the booster dose had a protective effect. Conclusion: COVID-19 vaccines appear to have several favorable effects among LT patients with breakthrough infections including lower likelihood of allograft involvement on imaging (among boosted patients), need of hospitalization, and complications such as new or worsening respiratory failure.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1517-1523
Number of pages7
JournalTransplantation proceedings
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jul 1 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Transplantation


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