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Helene Campbell: Double-lung Recipient Discharged From Hospital

05/05/2012 07:48 EDT | Updated 07/05/2012 05:12 EDT
A Lung Story/Twitter
TORONTO - The Ottawa woman who had a double-lung transplant last month is out of the hospital.

Helene Campbell tweeted about leaving hospital just before midnight Friday.

"Got discharged, I'm back at home away from home in Toronto, casa at lasta," she wrote. Campbell also posted a photo of herself sitting on a bed.

The 21-year-old became the unofficial face of organ donation in Canada after attracting endorsements from Justin Bieber and Ellen DeGeneres.

Campbell was diagnosed with advanced idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis last October and had surgery at Toronto General Hospital on April 6.

Doctors say her transplant experience has been much like any other.

The possibility that the donated organs may not have been available in the first place was always very real. Then there was the risk of organ rejection and the threat of infection.

What was different, however, was how Campbell and her family used her condition as a rallying point to encourage organ donation.

It was Bieber who helped catapult her into the spotlight by endorsing her campaign.

Campbell later appeared on "Ellen" via Skype and has been invited to return in person once she recovers.

She has been keeping her supporters posted on her progress through her blog _ alungstory.ca _ and her Twitter account, which currently boasts close to 15,000 followers.

The impact of her campaign has already translated into real numbers.

The president of the Trillium Gift of Life Network _ Ontario's organ and tissue donation agency _ said the organization would typically see 350 new registrations a week, but saw that number jump to 1,500 when Bieber endorsed Campbell's campaign and skyrocket to over 3,000 after Campbell's interview with DeGeneres.

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