Introduction: For a decade lung transplantation has suffered from a lack of donor organs which aroused a national debate and led to planned action in collaboration with The French National Agency for Transplantation.
Background: Analysis of the stages of the process from potential donor to lung transplantation identified lung procurement as the main priority. An increase in the number of potential lung donors and revision of the acceptance criteria led to a doubling of the annual rate of lung transplantation in less than two years.
Viewpoints: In the near future we may solve the problem of donor family refusals and establish scientifically based criteria for lung acceptance to increase the rate of lung transplantation. Transplantation from non heart-beating donors and the reconditioning of ex vivo non acceptable lungs might supply additional organs to fulfill demand in the long term.
Conclusions: The rate of lung transplantation activity in France doubled as the result of a dramatic increase of donor lung proposals. The current improvement in the results of lung transplantation might create new demands and generate future difficulties in the supply of donor lungs. New approaches, such as transplantation from non heart-beating donors and reconditioning ex vivo non acceptable lungs, should be examined in the near future.