Early Kidney Transplant May Be Advantageous

MARCH 01, 2006

A preemptive transplant may be beneficial for some patients with diabetes-related kidney disease, according to the findings of a study reported in the Annals of Internal Medicine (January 6, 2006). The researchers noted that the results indicate that the technique is successful when used before the need for chronic dialysis.

In their study, the investigators analyzed US national data on >23,000 patients with type 1 and type 2 diabetes. The participants had received kidney transplants from living or deceased donors or simultaneous pancreas- kidney transplantation. In total, preemptive transplantations were seen in 14.4% of patients with type 1 diabetes and 6.7% of patients with type 2 diabetes.

The researchers found—after considering age, sex, and race—that the technique was associated with a lower occurrence of dying in both types of diabetes only when the transplant was from a living donor. In simultaneous pancreas- kidney transplants, the benefit was observed only in patients with type 1 diabetes. The investigators concluded that the reduced benefit from preemptive transplantation from deceased donors, compared with reports in the early 1990s, needs further investigation.