Tag Archives: Lung

‘Real rotten time’ Melvyn Bragg reveals health battle with cancers and collapsed lung

However, aside from his health issues, Melvyn will soon be back at a glitzy awards ceremony.

He created The South Bank Awards, which will be returning on July 18.

He’ll also be back presenting the latest star-studded ceremony in person this year.

The nominations for this year include artists like Dua Lipa and series like I May Destroy You and Industry.

You can read Melvyn’s full interview in the Radio Times now.

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Celebrity News Feed

LDCT Lung Cancer Screening May ID Aortic Stenosis Risk

Using low-dose computed tomography (LDCT) to screen for aortic valve calcification during a lung cancer screening could identify those at risk for aortic stenosis, says new research published in Annals of Internal Medicine.

Aortic stenosis is one of the most common valve disease problems and is characterized by the narrowing of the aortic valve opening, according to the American Heart Association. The condition impedes the delivery of blood from the heart to the body.

Researchers found that LDCT, which according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is the only recommended screening test for lung cancer, also can be used to identify aortic valve calcification – a condition in which calcium deposits form on the aortic valve, narrowing it.

Since cardiovascular events and lung cancer are known to have the same modifiable risk factors, people screened for lung cancer could also be diagnosed with cardiovascular diseases, the authors noted in their paper.

Furthermore, a 2019 study published in the Journal of Thoracic Imaging found that LDCT can be useful for identifying not just lung cancer, but the early stages of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and coronary artery disease.

“LDCT has been described as useful for identifying the early stages of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and coronary artery disease, but it can also [screen for] calcified aortic valve [which corresponds] with the risk of severe aortic stenosis,” study author Marcin Fijalkowski, MD, PhD, of the Medical University of Gdansk, said in an interview. “This additional evaluation is not time-consuming and is easy to perform.”

Methods and Results

For the study, Fijalkowski and his colleagues examined data from 6,631 people between the ages of 50 and 80 years of age with a smoking history of 30 or more pack-years. The group was enrolled in the MOLTEST BIS lung cancer screening program between 2016 and 2018, which assessed the usefulness of LDCT performed during lung cancer screening in determining the degree of aortic valve calcification as an additional finding. The researchers arbitrarily determined a calcium score of 900 as a cutoff point indicating a positive test result. Positive patients were sent for an echocardiogram for confirmation of diagnosis.

Aortic valve calcification was identified in 869 patients, 13.1% of the group. Sixty-eight participants, which is about 8% of this group, were identified as having a calcium score of 900 at least and were referred for echocardiography to confirm these results. Of this group, 0.5% were diagnosed with at least moderate aortic stenosis after receiving an echocardiogram. About 55% of the participants with this condition were unaware of their valvular heart disease, including 23% with a severe form of the disease.

Study Identified Patients Who Had Not Been Aware of Disease

Fijalkowski said while he was not surprised by the findings, he was surprised that the study may have saved some of the participants’ lives.

“We were expecting the same degree of calcification of aortic valve and correlation with aortic stenosis severity, but what surprised us was that half of diagnosed patients were not aware of disease,” he said. “This additional finding was lifesaving.”

In the paper, the authors noted that cardiology societies do not yet recognize LDCT as a diagnostic tool for aortic stenosis. Based on their findings, they propose that aortic valve calcification become a routine assessment procedure in the LDCT protocol for lung cancer screening.

Findings Are “Important” but Not Practice Changing

Salim S. Virani, MD, FACC, who was not involved in the study, said this new research is important.

The analyses were done well and push the needle further in a direction that suggests “when we are doing imaging for one reason, we should use the totality of information that we have available,” he noted.

“I mean, if you are looking at a lung nodule, if you see an aortic valve that’s very calcified, then it should prompt you to at least ask the patient about some symptoms related to that,” Virani explained.

However, he said more research is needed on a larger population before LDCT can be considered a diagnostic tool for aortic stenosis.

“I think we have to understand that this study was done in a very specific group of patients,” said Virani, professor in the sections of cardiology and cardiovascular research at Baylor College of Medicine, Houston. “If you were to do it in a population that was much younger, with much lower risk of even lung cancer, then the yield of a CT to pick up aortic stenosis would be lower.”

Before any practice changes are made regarding LDCT and the diagnosis of aortic stenosis, there needs to be more research on how many people in the general population are getting non–cardiology-related chest imaging and then come up with a population-based metric as to what calcium score cutoff could be used, he said.

Fijalkowski said he believes the results of his study will encourage physicians to focus not only on pulmonary nodules but also to look for additional things such as aortic valve calcification.

The experts did not disclose any relevant financial relationships.

This article originally appeared on MDedge.com, part of the Medscape Professional Network.

This post originally appeared on Medscape Medical News Headlines

Gene Variant Confirmed as Strong Predictor of Lung Disease in RA

Patients with rheumatoid arthritis who carry a specific allele of the gene MUC5B have about double the risk of developing interstitial lung disease when compared with noncarriers, according to a large Finnish biobank study presented at the annual European Congress of Rheumatology.

“The risk difference [or carriers relative to noncarriers] started at about age 65, with a bigger difference [for] men than women,” reported Antti Palomäki, MD, PhD, of the center for rheumatology and clinical immunology at Turku (Finland) University.

The gain-of-function MUC5B variant, which encodes mucin 5B, was first linked to RA-associated interstitial lung disease (ILD) more than 3 years ago. At that time, it was already a known genetic risk factor for idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis in the general population. The new data confirm the association in a longitudinal analysis of a large biobank and suggest the association might have clinical utility.

“This is not ready for clinical practice at the moment. We do not yet know whether we can change therapy to reduce risk,” Palomäki said, adding “in the future we can look.”

One question that might be asked in clinical studies using MUC5B as a tool to assess and modify risk of ILD in patients with RA is whether one therapy is better than another in avoiding or delaying development of lung fibrosis. Palomäki noted that biologics, for example, might be a more favorable choice in patients with RA who are at high risk of developing ILD.

The association of the MUC5B variant with increased ILD incidence in patients with RA was drawn from a data set known as FinnGen, a biobank collection of epidemiologic cohorts and hospital samples with genotypes of about 10% of the Finnish population. Follow-up extends to 46 years in some of these individuals.

When 248,4000 individuals in this data set were evaluated, 5,534 had a diagnosis of RA. Of these, 178 (3.2%) developed ILD. About 20% of both those with and without RA were MUC5B variant carriers, meaning the remainder were not.

Sex and Age Factor Into Lifetime Risk

In patients with RA, the lifetime rate of ILD among MUC5B variant carriers was 16.8% versus only 6.1% among noncarriers. This finding translated into a hazard ratio for ILD of 2.27 (95% confidence interval, 1.75–2.96) for variant carriers versus noncarriers.

The lifetime rate of ILD in patients with RA was greater in men versus women regardless of carrier status (18.5% vs. 8.5%). For women, the lifetime rate was lower for carriers, although the difference relative to female noncarriers was greater (14.5% vs. 4.7%).

ILD, whether in the general population or in patients with RA, is a disease of advancing age. When Palomäki showed a graph, the rise in ILD incidence did not start in any population, whether those with or without RA and regardless of carrier status, until about age 55. In those without RA and in noncarriers of the variant, ILD incidence remained low and began a discernible climb at around age 70.

In those who did not have RA but were positive for the variant, the rates rose more than twice as fast, particularly after age 70. In people who had RA but not the variant, the rate of ILD was greater than in patients who carried the variant without RA, starting the climb earlier and rising more steeply with age. In those with RA and the variant, the climb in ILD incidence rose rapidly after age 65 years even though the incidence remained fairly similar between all of these groups at age 60.

Putting the Findings Into Context

The need to develop ways to prevent ILD in RA is urgent. ILD is one of the most common extraarticular manifestations of RA, developing in up to 60% of patients with RA in older age groups when evaluated with imaging, according to Palomäki. Although it develops into a clinically significant complication in only about 10% of these patients, ILD still is a significant cause of illness and death in elderly patients with RA.

In the 2018 study that first linked the MUC5B variant to RA-ILD, the investigators also found that the variant was associated with an increased likelihood of developing the usual interstitial pneumonia type of ILD on imaging. David Schwartz, MD, professor of medicine, pulmonary sciences, and critical care and chair of the department of medicine at the University of Colorado at Denver, Aurora, was a senior author of that study. He said these findings build on the 2018 study.

“While the gain-of-function MUC5B promoter variant is important in predicting who will develop RA-ILD, these findings also suggest that MUC5B may be involved in the etiology of RA-ILD, at least for those with the MUC5B variant,” he said.

“The study also raises the possibility that there are several subtypes of RA-ILD, and the subtype that is driven by MUC5B may respond differently to RA biologics or therapeutic agents to treat ILD,” he added.

In the discussion following the presentation by Palomäki, others agreed, with that statement including Palomäki. He expressed interest in clinical studies comparing different classes of RA therapies for their relative impact on the risk of developing ILD.Palomäki reported financial relationships with AbbVie, Merck, Pfizer, and Sanofi. Schwartz is the founder of Eleven P15, which is developing methods for early diagnosis and treatment of pulmonary fibrosis.

This article originally appeared on MDedge.com, part of the Medscape Professional Network.

This post originally appeared on Medscape Medical News Headlines

5x Grammy winner BJ Thomas dies of lung cancer complications at 78

Grammy winner BJ Thomas dies

ARLINGTON, Texas — B.J. Thomas, the Grammy-winning singer who enjoyed success on the pop, country and gospel charts with such hits as “I Just Can’t Help Believing,” “Raindrops Keep Fallin’ On My Head” and “Hooked on a Feeling,” has died. He was 78.

Thomas, who announced in March that he had been diagnosed with lung cancer, died from complications of the disease Saturday at his home in Arlington, Texas, his publicist Jeremy Westby said in a statement.

A Hugo, Oklahoma-native who grew up in Houston, Billy Joe Thomas broke through in 1966 with a gospel-styled cover of Hank Williams’ “I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry” and went on to sell millions of records and have dozens of hits across genres. He reached No. 1 with pop, adult contemporary and country listeners in 1976 with (Hey Won’t You Play) Another Somebody Done Somebody Wrong Song.” The same year, his “Home Where I Belong” became one of the first gospel albums to be certified platinum for selling more than 1 million copies.

His signature recording was “Raindrops Keep Fallin’ On My Head,” a No. 1 pop hit and an Oscar winner for best original song as part of the soundtrack to one of the biggest movies of 1969, the irreverent Western “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.” Thomas wasn’t the first choice to perform the whimsical ballad composed by Burt Bacharach and Hal David; Ray Stevens turned the songwriters down. But his warm, soulful tenor fit the song’s easygoing mood, immortalized on film during the scene when Butch (Paul Newman) shows off his new bicycle to Etta Place (Katharine Ross), the girlfriend of the Sundance Kid (Robert Redford).

“Raindrops” has since been heard everywhere from “The Simpsons” to “Forrest Gump” and was voted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 2013. But, at first, not everyone was satisfied. Thomas was recovering from laryngitis while recording the soundtrack version and his vocals are raspier than for the track released on its own. Redford, meanwhile, doubted the song even belonged in “Butch Cassidy.”

“When the film was released, I was highly critical – how did the song fit with the film? There was no rain,” Redford told USA Today in 2019. “At the time, it seemed like a dumb idea. How wrong I was.”

Thomas would later say the phenomenon of “Raindrops” exacerbated an addiction to pills and alcohol which dated back to his teens, when a record producer in Houston suggested he take amphetamines to keep his energy up. He was touring and recording constantly and taking dozens of pills a day. By 1976, while (Hey Won’t You Play) Another Somebody Done Somebody Wrong Song” was hitting No. 1, he felt like he was “number 1,000.”

“I was at the bottom with my addictions and my problems,” he said in 2020 on “The Debby Campbell Goodtime Show.” He cited a “spiritual awakening,” shared with his wife, Gloria Richardson, with helping him to get clean.

Thomas had few pop hits after the mid-1970s, but he continued to score on the country charts with such No. 1 songs as “Whatever Happened to Old-Fashioned Love” and “New Looks from an Old Lover.” In the late 1970s and early ’80s, he was also a top gospel and inspirational singer, winning two Dove awards and five Grammys, including a Grammy in 1979 for best gospel performance for “The Lord’s Prayer.”

Fans of the 1980s sitcom “Growing Pains” heard him as the singer of the show’s theme song. He also acted in a handful of movies, including “Jory” and “Jake’s Corner” and toured often. Recent recordings included “Living Room Music,” featuring cameos from Lyle Lovett, Vince Gill and Richard Marx. He had planned to record in 2020 in Muscle Shoals, Alabama, but the sessions were delayed because of the pandemic.

Thomas married Richardson in 1968, and had three daughters: Paige, Nora and Erin. He and his wife worked on the 1982 memoir “In Tune: Finding How Good Life Can Be.” His book “Home Where I Belong” came out in 1978 and was co-authored by Jerry B. Jenkins, later famous for the million-selling “Left Behind” religious novels written with Tim LaHaye.

Besides music, Thomas loved baseball as a kid and started calling himself B.J. because so many Little League teammates also were named Billy Joe. By his teens, he was singing in church and had joined a local rock band, the Triumphs, whom he would stay with into his 20s. He enjoyed Ernest Tubbs, Hank Williams and other country performers his parents liked, but on his own he was inspired by the soul and rhythm and blues singers he heard on the radio or saw on stage, notably Jackie Wilson, whose hit ballad “To Be Loved” Thomas later covered and adopted as a kind of guide to his life.

“I was raised in a fairly dysfunctional situation and I went through years of intense alcoholism and drug addiction so the song was always a touchstone for me. When you open yourself up to drugs and alcohol at such a young age it becomes something you have to deal with the rest of your life,” he told the Huffington Post in 2014.

“What a road block and heartbreak and times of failure these addictions have caused me. But I had that little piece of lightning from that song. That’s the essence of the whole thing. To love and be loved. And that takes a lifetime to accomplish. It’s always been an important part of my emotions.”

Video above from previous post.

Copyright © 2021 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.

Author: AP

This post originally appeared on ABC13 RSS Feed

Lung cancer: Lesser-known sign of disease is a painful skin condition warning of your risk

Lung cancer occurs when cells divide in the lungs uncontrollably. This causes tumours to grow which can reduce a person’s ability to breathe. The disease could spread to other parts of the body making the condition potentially fatal. For this reason, spotting early and unusual signs warning of your risk is critical. An itchy or painful rash is a lesser-known warning sign to spot.

As well as the rash, patients tend to develop progressive muscle weakness around their hips, thighs, shoulders and arms.

“Dermatomyositis in adults has been linked to an increased likelihood of developing cancer, particularly of the cervix, lungs, pancreas, breasts, ovaries and gastrointestinal tract,” said the Mayo Clinic.

“Dermatomyositis is an uncommon inflammatory disease marked by muscle weakness and a distinctive skin rash.

“The most common signs and symptoms of dermatomyositis include skin changes.”

Other unusual signs of the disease include back pain or constipation

Back pain

Back or shoulder pain is a very common symptom of lung cancer.

It’s usually caused by a specific type of lung cancer, known as a Pancoast tumour.

These cancers grow in the upper part of the lungs, and subsequently spreads to either the ribs, nerves or spine.

If lung cancer is causing your back pain, you’ll most likely feel an achy pain at the top of your back.

How to respond if worried about potential signs of lung cancer

According to the NHS, you should see a GP if you have symptoms of lung cancer, such as breathlessness or a persistent cough.

As the health body explains, the GP will ask about your general health and your symptoms.

“They may examine you and ask you to breathe into a device called a spirometer, which measures how much air you breathe in and out,” it says.

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Health Feed
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UK gets new lung cancer drug under international scheme thanks to Brexit deal

The nation was signed up to the US-led Project Orbis in January to work with other countries to review and approve promising cancer ­medicines quickly and efficiently. Hundreds of patients are now expected to benefit from the new post-surgery treatment.
The UK’s involvement was revealed by the Daily Express in October, when Health Secretary Matt Hancock announced “teaming up with the fastest regulators in the world to get safe licences as fast as the science allows”.

He said at the time: “One of the benefits of Brexit will be faster access to life-saving treatments on the NHS.”

The other nations involved are Canada, Australia, Switzerland, Singapore, and Brazil.

The lung cancer drug – called Osimertinib – is made by AstraZeneca and sold under the brand name Tagrisso.

Given in tablet form, it was originally licensed to treat patients with mid and later-stage non-small cell lung ­cancer who carry a gene mutation called EGFR – which is around 12 percent of sufferers. But it has been extended to include those in early-stage disease after the cancer is surgically removed.

Mr Hancock said: “It is absolutely vital NHS patients have access to the most promising, ­cutting-edge treatments as quickly as possible.

“Leaving the EU ­presented us with the opportunity to join Project Orbis – a ­collaboration with the top regulators around the world – to speed up the time it takes to get new medicines to patients.

“I am delighted we are able to see the first results – a groundbreaking drug for lung ­cancer which will soon benefit hundreds of patients and I look forward to seeing what further ­innovations it will bring to the table.”

Project Orbis was launched by the US Food and Drug Administration in 2019 to streamline drugs reviews.

The UK’s Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) will make the final decision to authorise any medicines.

Chief executive Dr June Raine said: “We know that the earlier we can treat patients, the better their outcomes.

“The MHRA is cementing the UK’s global position at the centre of life ­sciences and healthcare access.”

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Health Feed
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Lung cancer symptoms: Four 'surprising' signs of lung cancer 'you may not expect'

Balance problems

Lung cancer could have an impact on your nervous system, which is essential for balance.

“Small-cell lung cancers may tell your immune system to attack your nervous system, which can in turn affect how your muscles work,” said medical website WebMD.

“It may be hard to stand up when you’re sitting, or you might feel unsteady.

“You could be dizzy from anaemia or from a backup in your superior vena cava, the large vein that moves blood from your head to your heart, if it’s crowded by a tumour in the upper right lung.”

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Health Feed
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Lung cancer: An unsettling change to your face could indicate your risk

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Health Feed

People with advanced cancer may notice a swelling on the face or neck. According to Cancer Research UK, this is called superior vena cava obstruction (SVCO). As Macmillan UK explained, the superior vena cava (SVC) is a big vein in the middle of the chest. It carries blood from the upper body to the heart. If cancer presses on the SVC, it may block the flow of blood along this vein. The charity said: “SVCO is usually caused by a lung cancer near this vein and less commonly other types of cancer.”

As Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation (RCLCF) explains, many people will think a swollen face is the sign of an allergic reaction.

“However, swelling of the face can be caused by a superior vena cava obstruction, which is usually caused by lung cancer,” explains the health body.

The superior vena cava is a large vein in the chest – it carries blood from the upper half of the body into the heart.

According to RCLCF, superior vena cava obstruction occurs when something stops the blood flowing.

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Other symptoms of SVCO may include:

A feeling of fullness in the face when bending over



Swelling in the hands, and veins on a person’s chest

Feeling dizzy

Changes in a person’s eyesight.

How to respond to symptoms

According to the NHS, you should see a GP if you have symptoms of lung cancer, such as breathlessness or a persistent cough.

As the health body explains, the GP will ask about your general health and your symptoms.

“They may examine you and ask you to breathe into a device called a spirometer, which measures how much air you breathe in and out,” it says.

Who’s at risk?

There are some factors that can increase your risk of developing lung cancer.

Having any of these risk factors doesn’t mean that you will definitely get cancer, however.

Smoking tobacco is the biggest cause of lung cancer in the UK – around seven out of 10 lung cancers are caused by smoking, reports Cancer Research UK.

If you are struggling to quit smoking, you call the NHS Smokefree helpline on 0300 123 1044, open Monday to Friday, 9am to 8pm and Saturday to Sunday, 11am to 4pm.

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Jane McDonald’s partner Eddie Rothe dies after ‘battling lung cancer for last few months'

“We both realise we are lucky to have found each other again.

“I am genuinely having fun again. I’m more confident than ever and I’ve got a fantastic man who makes me laugh every day.”

Jane also addressed their engagement, admitting in 2011: “This must be the longest courtship and engagement in history. 

“We first met when most people in this country weren’t even born!

“Ed’s been so patient. He’s fantastic, adorable and we’re having such a great time together. We are not rushing to get married. I love this one more than I ever loved the others and I don’t want to jinx it. 

“In any case, I can’t afford to get divorced again,” she quipped.

Liesbeth Stoeffler, 61, Runner Kept Going by Rare Lung Treatment, Dies

Liesbeth Stoeffler’s doctors had a bold decision to make in 2009. Ms. Stoeffler was on a ventilator and deeply sedated after cystic fibrosis had destroyed the lungs that had once given her the ability to run and hike.

She needed a double-lung transplant, but doctors worried that prolonged time on the respirator might render her too weak or malnourished to stay eligible for one.

So doctors at Columbia University Irving Medical Center took her off the ventilator after about a day and hooked her to an extracorporeal membrane oxygenation machine, or ECMO, which pumped blood from her body, removed carbon dioxide from it and sent oxygen-rich blood flowing back into her. In effect, it acted as an artificial lung.

It was a rarely known and risky deployment of the machine, but not only did it allow Ms. Stoeffler to awaken from sedation; it also allowed her to eat, speak on her smartphone, exercise in bed and walk in place while she was connected to it — for an unusually long 18 days[1], until the transplant took place.

“The ECMO was the bridge between my respiratory failure and the transplant,” Ms. Stoeffler told USA Today in 2009.

ECMO — a treatment for lung-damaging viruses — has proved extremely helpful in the past with cases of H1N1 flu (or swine flu) and is now being widely used at major medical centers in the Covid-19 pandemic, according to data from Columbia and other ECMO centers around the world. A study published in the medical journal The Lancet[2] last September showed that 62.6 percent of 1,035 severely ill Covid-19 patients survived after receiving ECMO treatments.

Ms. Stoeffler’s transplanted lungs worked well for nearly a decade, enabling her to hike in the mountains near her childhood home in Austria and finish two New York City Marathons,half-marathons, an Ironman bicycle course and a sprint triathlon.

But her body eventually rejected the transplanted lungs, and she underwent another transplant in 2019. It did not work as well or last as long. Ms. Stoeffler died of cystic fibrosis on March 4 at the Irving Medical Center, her brother Ewald Stoffler said. She was 61.

Liesbeth Stoeffler was born on June 18, 1959, in Hermagor, Austria, a town at the foot of the Carnic Alps. Her father, Johann, was a truck driver; her mother, Margarethe (Strempfl) Stoeffler, was a homemaker.

After finishing trade school, she left Austria in 1977 for an au pair job in Manhattan, where she had hoped to move since she was young, her brother said in an email.

“During the first three years Liesbeth spent in New York, she refused to speak a single word of German,” Mr. Stoeffler wrote, “so she can learn English as fast and as good as possible.”

She took classes in computers and graphic design and was hired by Deutsche Bank, the Blackstone Group and finally the investment management firm Sanford C. Bernstein (now AllianceBernstein). She worked there for nearly 20 years, rising to vice president and presentation specialist and creating graphics for marketing and sales documents.

She began to experience breathing problems while at Bernstein and learned she had cystic fibrosis in 1995. But she kept it largely to herself.

“She was always coughing, causing her co-workers to ask her to check it out,” said Christina Restivo, a close friend who had met her at Bernstein and was the leader of a support team of friends who looked after her. “She kept it private until she was so far along that the only way to live was with a double transplant.”

In June 2009, after a routine blood test at the hospital, Ms. Stoeffler felt too exhausted to return home. One of her doctors, David Lederer, a pulmonologist, admitted her.

“Within 48 hours, she was in the I.C.U., on a ventilator,” he said in a video about her case[3] made by the Irving Medical Center. He added, “She wasn’t really improving on the vent support we were providing for her, so we knew we had to do something for her.”

Using the ECMO helped her remain eligible for the transplant. “About five days into it, she told me it was the best she’d felt in years,” Dr. Matthew Bacchetta,[4] who also treated Ms. Stoeffler, told a Columbia online publication.

In less than two years, Ms. Stoeffler began running races in earnest. Starting with the Fred Lebow[5] Classic, a five-mile race in Central Park in January 2011 (named after the founder of the New York City Marathon), she finished 47 different races[6] hosted by the New York Road Runners[7] club. Her last one was an 8-kilometer event in August 2017.

Ms. Restivo said that her friend’s running had probably extended the life of her transplanted lungs.

“Because your immune system is so suppressed by having a transplant, she was told not to exercise in a gym, where she could pick up bacteria,” she said. “She used the outdoors to exercise her lungs.”

In addition to her brother Ewald, Ms. Stoeffler is survived by three sisters, Gabriele and Birgit Stoeffler and Waltraud Wildpanner; and another brother, Hannes.

Ms. Restivo, who is the executor of Ms. Stoeffler’s will, said Ms. Stoeffler would sometimes text with instructions to give the doctors. Another text arrived on her last day.

“I got a call to go to the hospital at 3:30 a.m. in the morning,” she said. “Liesbeth, with her oxygen mask on, was still alert, texting me as usual, telling me what to do and keeping me advised of her status. Fully cognizant at all times.”


  1. ^ an unusually long 18 days (columbiasurgery.org)
  2. ^ The Lancet (www.thelancet.com)
  3. ^ he said in a video about her case (www.youtube.com)
  4. ^ Dr. Matthew Bacchetta, (columbiasurgery.org)
  5. ^ Fred Lebow (www.nytimes.com)
  6. ^ finished 47 different races (results.nyrr.org)
  7. ^ New York Road Runners (www.nyrr.org)

Richard Sandomir