According to a new study in American Journal of Transplantation, kidney transplant patients suffering from anemia, a treatable blood deficiency, are more likely to die or suffer from organ failure than other transplant recipients.
“During a four year period following kidney transplantation, we found that anemic patients were 70 percent more likely to die following their transplant, and two and a half times more likely to again require dialysis,” says study author Dr. Istvan Mucsi.
Anemia affects a large number of transplant recipients. “Between 15,000 and 20,000 transplant patients in the U.S. are likely to have severe enough anemia to be treated for it, but it is likely that only a fraction of patients actually receive treatment,” says Dr. Mucsi.
It is currently unknown if treating anemia in kidney transplanted patients would improve patient survival; further research is needed. “In the interim, we believe it is prudent to focus more on the diagnosis of post-transplant anemia and also to apply appropriate guidelines that are available for its treatment in chronic kidney disease patients not yet requiring dialysis,” says Dr. Mucsi.
Dr. Istvan Mucsi is a clinician scientist and associate professor of medicine at Semmelweis University in Budapest. He is also a visiting nephrology professor at the University of Toronto.
The aim of the American Journal of Transplantation is the rapid publication of new high quality data in organ and tissue transplantation and the related sciences. Its scope includes organ and tissue donation and preservation; tissue injury, repair, inflammation, and aging; immune recognition, regulation, effector mechanisms, and opportunities for induction of tolerance; histocompatibility; drugs and pharmacology relevant to transplantation; graft survival and prevention of graft dysfunction and failure; clinical trials and population analyses; transplant complications; xenotransplantation; and ethical and societal issues. For more information, please visit http://www.blackwellpublishing.com/ajt.
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