Pediatric renal transplantation: indications and special considerations. A position paper from the Pediatric Committee of the American Society of Transplant Physicians

Pediatr Transplant. 1998 May;2(2):117-29.


Renal transplantation of children with chronic renal insufficiency (CRI) and end-stage renal disease (ESRD) appears to be the optimal form of renal replacement therapy. This report, which expresses the opinions of the nephrology members of the Pediatric Committee of the American Society of Transplant Physicians, discusses the indications for pediatric renal transplantation and identifies the unique aspects of caring for children with CRI and ESRD. Indications for pediatric renal transplantation include: 1) symptoms of uremia not responsive to standard therapy; 2) failure to thrive due to limitations in total caloric intake; 3) delayed psychomotor development; 4) hypervolemia; 5) hyperkalemia; and 6) metabolic bone disease due to renal osteodystrophy. The urgency and timing of renal transplantation in children must be considered in the context of a number of issues unique to children with CRI and ESRD such as delayed cognitive and educational performance, growth retardation, delayed puberty, etiology of ESRD, and timing of immunizations. In addition, these children frequently display various inherited and sporadic syndromes with multiorgan involvement requiring the expertise of a variety of pediatric subspecialists including the pediatric urologist, who plays a critical role in the evaluation of children with obstructive uropathy and other anomalies of the genito-urinary system. The advantages of a living-related donor are also delineated. The importance of adequate immunosuppression on graft function, early recognition of the signs and symptoms acute rejection, preventive strategies for minimizing the morbidity and mortality from viral infections in the post-transplant period, and the impact of transplantation on cognitive function, educational status, and catch-up growth are also discussed. To address these complex issues, transplant care of pediatric patients must be provided by a multidisciplinary team of pediatric health care professionals.

Publication types

  • Guideline
  • Practice Guideline
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Child
  • Humans
  • Immunosuppression
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / complications
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / surgery*
  • Kidney Transplantation*
  • Living Donors