Skip to Main Content

Catching His Breath

Watch CBS Eye on Health's "Catching His Breath" on Sunday, Oct. 11 at 6:30 p.m. on KPIX-Channel 5

Watch a preview

Bradley Dell Never Dared to Dream Until He Came to UCSF

CBS Eye on Health presents "Catching His Breath," a 30-minute special presented by UCSF Health. The story follows Bradley Dell, a young man who suffers from severe cystic fibrosis. The Hawaii native becomes so sick that his survival depends on whether he gets a double-lung transplant. Unfortunately, because he has a super bacterial infection, hospitals across the country turn him down for the surgery. When the UCSF transplant team learns about Bradley's case, they realize they need to push the boundaries of what defines a transplant candidate.

"We've been having better than expected outcomes in the country for the last nine years in a row," said Dr. Jasleen Kukreja, Bradley's surgeon and director of UCSF lung transplantation. "A lot of transplants we do are from patients who were in the intensive care unit hanging by a thread. So word gets around and we get all kinds of challenging cases that have been turned down by three or four centers in the country, like Brad's case."

Within five weeks, a pair of lungs was found for Bradley and his transplant surgery went smoothly. "In terms of his outlook, cystic fibrosis patients have the best outcomes after lung transplant of any other indication that we transplant lungs for," said Dr. Kukreja.

Bradley says he never dared to dream about his future before he met his UCSF lung transplant team. And after getting new lungs, he has been thinking far into the future and has even looked into getting a 401K.

Nine weeks following his transplant, UCSF also provided cochlear implants for Bradley who lost his hearing in Hawaii after using a powerful antibiotic to fight off an infection. Being able to hear again was an added bonus of being a UCSF patient. As Bradley's dad Rick said, "Getting cochlear implants was icing on the cake."

Watch Bradley's inspirational story on Sunday, Oct. 11 at 6:30 p.m. on local CBS station KPIX-TV Channel 5. You can also watch the program LIVE on KPIX-TV without cable with one of these streaming services: fuboTV, Hulu with Live TV, CBS All Access, YouTube TV and AT&T TV Now.