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Girl with transplanted lungs has pneumonia

PHILADELPHIA -- A 10-year-old girl who had a pair of adult-lung transplants after her parents sued to change national rules regarding organ donations has developed pneumonia in her right lung, which her mother said yesterday was "a large setback."

Sarah Murnaghan's mother, Janet, wrote on her Facebook page that after a "tough" day on Sunday, Sarah's condition had become more stable yesterday.

"We have an amazing team of doctors who go above and beyond but also walk this road with us in such a kind and compassionate way," she wrote.

Sarah, who is being treated at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, has been hospitalized for months with end-stage cystic fibrosis, a chronic genetic disorder that causes sticky mucus to build up in the lungs, pancreas and other organs.

The girl from Newtown Square, a Philadelphia suburb, was a top candidate for organs from a child donor but none was available. Her parents sued to change a national transplant policy that put her at the bottom of the adult list for patients 12 and older.

A federal judge intervened and the Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network, the private nonprofit group that manages U.S. organ allocation, added Sarah to the adult list.

Sarah's situation has sparked a national debate and raised questions among some health experts and medical ethicists about organ donation rules and under what circumstances they might be disregarded. -- AP