The U.S. Organ Procurement and Transplant Network follows rules determined by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services for organ transplants, and regarding lung transplants and donors, it appears that marijuana smokers will likely go unchosen. The organization’s criteria for acceptable donors is over 30-years old.
Marijuana users are often disqualified as being lung recipients and donors, according to Salon; although, lungs received from marijuana users had similar life cycles as non-marijuana users. Some many people still say that marijuana users are at higher risk for lung infections.
A recent survey of medical professionals—including doctors, surgeons and transplant specialists—from 26 countries showed that 64.4-percent of them say that medical marijuana use should not be a single defining factor for disqualification. Of that same group of professionals, 27.5-percent say that recreational marijuana use should not be a disqualifying factor either.
One statistic of the study rings loudly: Those receiving lungs from donors not considered to be “prime candidates” lived longer after the transplant than those that were not matched and received new lungs.
States with laws prohibiting organ transplant discrimination in relation to medical marijuana use include:
- New Hampshire
- Washington State