Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Steroid Therapies Following Transplant Can Be Eliminated, Study Suggests

Date:
November 5, 2008
Source:
University of Cincinnati
Summary:
Using modern immunosuppressive drugs eliminates the need for steroid therapy as early as seven days following a transplant surgery while still maintaining kidney function, according to new research.

Steve Woodle, MD. Using modern immunosuppressive drugs eliminates the need for steroid therapy as early as seven days following a transplant surgery while still maintaining kidney function, according to new research.
Credit: Image courtesy of University of Cincinnati

A new study by researchers at UC shows that using modern immunosuppressive drugs eliminates the need for steroid therapy as early as seven days following a transplant surgery while still maintaining kidney function.

Related Articles


Steve Woodle, MD, chief of UC’s transplant surgery division, principal investigator and designer of the study, says the elimination of a daily dose of steroids following transplantation minimizes chronic health conditions common to kidney transplant recipients.

The data—from what is believed to be the longest-running, double-blinded study of its kind in the transplant field—is published in the October issue of the Annals of Surgery.

“Steroids have long been the primary source of morbidity and complications following successful kidney transplantation,” Woodle says. “This study demonstrates that elimination of even small, daily prednisone (pred-ne-zone) doses does not compromise results while minimizing weight gain, diabetes and bone complications.”

Corticosteroids were the first anti-rejection drug used in transplant patients, dating back to the first transplant surgeries over 50 years ago.

Traditionally patients who have undergone organ transplantation have required life-long steroid treatments given in combination with other drugs that help suppress the body’s immune system and allow the transplanted organ to function properly.

However, the steroid treatment—given as the oral drug, prednisone—can cause serious side effects including cardiovascular disease, high cholesterol and blood pressure, weight gain, diabetes, bone weakness and cataracts.

To test the effectiveness of early steroid elimination, researchers studied 397 patients from 25 U.S. kidney transplant centers for a five-year period following transplant. They administered low doses of prednisone to one group of transplant patients while the other group of patients received a placebo.

The results showed that early steroid elimination caused reduction in many steroid-related complications, even when prednisone was given in very low doses.

Kidney function was similar in both patient groups. “By demonstrating identical kidney transplant survival and function for five years, we now have a scientific basis for offering steroid-free therapies in kidney recipients,” Woodle says.

However, he notes that risk of rejection episodes in patients was slightly increased with early steroid discontinuation. “These episodes were mild and easily treated,” he says.

He adds that although the five-year kidney transplant survival and function were identical between those who received predisone and those who received other immunosuppressive drugs in this study, it doesn’t mean that it will be the same in 10 or 20 years.

“Our hope is that with our modern anti-rejection drugs and new drugs being developed, even this small risk of increased rejection combined with longer-term results will not be changed,” he says.

The results of this study are now being used in different transplant populations, resulting in much lower prednisone doses or complete elimination with fewer complications.

This study also involved researchers from the University of Wisconsin; the University of Utah; the Methodist Hospital, Houston; and Weill Cornell Medical College.

This study was funded by Astellas Pharma U.S., Inc. Study authors cite receipt of payment for participating in pharmaceutical-sponsored speaking engagements about immunosuppressants.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Cincinnati. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Cincinnati. "Steroid Therapies Following Transplant Can Be Eliminated, Study Suggests." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 5 November 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/10/081021185203.htm>.
University of Cincinnati. (2008, November 5). Steroid Therapies Following Transplant Can Be Eliminated, Study Suggests. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 1, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/10/081021185203.htm
University of Cincinnati. "Steroid Therapies Following Transplant Can Be Eliminated, Study Suggests." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/10/081021185203.htm (accessed April 1, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Wound-Healing Laser Soon to Be a Reality Israeli Scientist

Wound-Healing Laser Soon to Be a Reality Israeli Scientist

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Apr. 1, 2015) Israeli scientists says laser bonding of tissue allows much faster healing and less scarring. Amy Pollock has more. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Liberia Sees Resurgence of Drug Trafficking as Ebola Wanes

Liberia Sees Resurgence of Drug Trafficking as Ebola Wanes

AFP (Apr. 1, 2015) The governments of Liberia and Sierra Leone have been busy fighting the menace created by the deadly Ebola virus, but illicit drug lords have taken advantage of the situation to advance the drug trade. Duration: 01:12 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Stigma Stalks India's Leprosy Sufferers as Disease Returns

Stigma Stalks India's Leprosy Sufferers as Disease Returns

AFP (Apr. 1, 2015) The Indian government declared victory over leprosy in 2005, but the disease is making a comeback in some parts of the country, with more than a hundred thousand lepers still living in colonies, shunned from society. Duration: 02:41 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
7-Year-Old Girl Gets 3-D Printed 'robohand'

7-Year-Old Girl Gets 3-D Printed 'robohand'

AP (Mar. 31, 2015) Although she never had much interest in prosthetic limbs before, Faith Lennox couldn&apos;t wait to slip on her new robohand. The 7-year-old, who lost part of her left arm when she was a baby, grabbed it as soon as it came off a 3-D printer. (March 31) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins