First successful lung transplant in Michigan

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. -- West Michigan reached a medical milestone, its first lung transplant.

A 59-year-old patients says without this transplant he probably wouldn't have lived longer than two years.

Surgeons at the Grand Rapids facility have performed 25 heart transplants in recent years, and now their first lung transplant.

The patient was suffering from lung scarring and had been on oxygen for six months after a ten year battle.

For years, he felt like he couldn't breathe until this successful surgery.

"I'd like to start by thanking the donor family," said Joe Steponski, the transplant patient. "The gift of life organization for providing it because without that none of this would be happening."

The surgery lasted over six hours.

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