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Lung Transplant Girl Has Pneumonia

Wed, 07/10/2013 - 10:24am

Less than a month after two lung transplant surgeries to save Sarah Murnaghan's life, the 10-year-old has developed pneumonia in her second set of replacement lungs, her mother posted on Monday.

Sarah has developed pneumonia in her right lung, her mother, Janet Murnaghan posted on her Facebook page. Physicians believe it was caused by aspirations from her belly, she wrote, meaning contents from her stomach went through the wrong pipes and into her lungs.

"Yesterday was tough," Murnaghan wrote. "Today she is more stable, but this is definitely a large set back."

The lungs were infected with pneumonia before they were implanted, but this is a new infection.

Pneumonia is not uncommon after any type of lung surgery, CNN's Sanjay Gupta said.

"Sarah had an even higher increased risk because she's taking immune-suppressing drugs and because of her cystic fibrosis," Gupta said. "But even with a setback like this infection, nearly 80% of people survive at least one year after lung transplant."

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