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Wyoming man recovers after lung transplant

Updated: Friday, February 15 2013, 08:52 PM EST
Wyoming man recovers after lung transplant story image

(NEWSCHANNEL 3) - A Wyoming man is recovering after receiving a lung transplant last week--the first lung transplant ever performed in West Michigan.

59-year-old Joseph Steponski received a new right lung on February 4th at Spectrum Health, and on Friday, he spoke for the first time.

Steponski had idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis.

Doctors don't know what causes it, but it causes scarring in the lungs and makes it extremely difficult to breathe.

Steponski says the surgery has already made a huge difference.

"I feel phenomenal; I haven't breathed this easy and this well," he said. "I've been on oxygen steady for 6 months, and this is 6 days now I've been without it."

Steponski says he's very grateful to the organ donor and their family.

He encourages everyone to become an organ donor.

Doctors say his prognosis for recovery is strong.

Wyoming man recovers after lung transplant
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