Warning: Graphic content
Smokers, beware! You might want to put down that cigarette after you read this article. Recent images of a chain smoker’s lungs have been circulating on social media and it looks really shocking. Netizens have dubbed it the best “anti-smoking” ad as images of the tar-blackened lungs went viral.
According to The Mirror, the incident happened at Wuxi People’s Hospital in Jiangsu, China. Doctor Chen Jingyu and his transplant team were supposed to harvest the lungs to be donated to those in need but after they saw the lungs, they decided to reject it.
The video of the team harvesting the lungs has been viewed more than 25 million times. The donor is believed to be a 52-year-old man who had been a chain smoker for 30 years and he often smoked a pack a day. He had been declared brain dead and wished to donate his organs so the team was sent in.
However, instead of an expected healthy pink colour, the medics were shocked to discover that the lungs were blackened with the decades of tar and tobacco he had been inhaling all this while. They realised that the lungs could not be used, even though initial tests showed that the lungs were working fine.
The doctor said that the pair of lungs had issues such as lung calcification, bullous lung disease and pulmonary emphysema as a result of three decades of smoking, so they were not suitable for donation. Dr Chen wrote a post using the hashtag “jieyan” which translates to Mandarin for “quit smoking” and said, “Many smokers in this country have lungs which look like this. Our team decided to reject these lungs for transplant. If you’re a heavy smoker, your lungs may not be accepted even if you choose to donate them after death. Look at these lungs – do you still have the courage to smoke?”
When asked, he told local media that the man had not done a CT scan before his death. “He was declared brain-dead, and his lungs were donated shortly after that. Initial oxygenation index tests were OK, but when we harvested the organs, we realised we wouldn’t be able to use them. We Chinese love smoking. It would be impractical to say that we wouldn’t accept the lungs of all smokers, but there are strict standards.”
“These include lungs under 60 years of age in a patient who has only recently been declared medically dead; minor infections in the lungs and relatively clean chest X-rays are also acceptable. If the above conditions are met, we would consider transplanting the lungs,” he added.
Netizens were shocked by the condition of the lungs while others tagged their friends to warn them about the dangers of smoking. While there have been graphic images of various sicknesses illustrated on cigarette packs, looking at video footage of an actual lung is definitely tougher to handle.
So, are you going to stop smoking?
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