Predictors of final adult height after renal transplantation during childhood: a single-center study

Nephron. 2000 Nov;86(3):266-73. doi: 10.1159/000045780.


Aim: Assessment of final adult height and its predictive factors in children transplanted (RTx) and followed up in a single center.

Methods: A cohort of 32 patients (17 boys, 15 girls) who received RTx before the age of 15 years and had reached a final adult height was selected. Twenty patients received a single RTx, 9 patients received two RTx, and 3 patients received three RTx. Seven children were transplanted preemptively, while the remaining 25 children received peritoneal dialysis for relatively short periods of time. In 11 patients, recombinant human growth hormone (rhGH) was administered either before (n = 8) or after (n = 3) RTx.

Results: In 13 patiens (41%), the final height standard deviation score for chronological age (hSDS) was -2.3+/-0.5, below the 95% confidence limits for target height (group A), while in 19 patients (59%), it was -0.7+/-0.8, within the 95% confidence limits for target height (group B). The hSDS values at the start of dialysis and at the time of first RTx were significantly lower in group A than in group B. A higher hSDS at the start of dialysis and at the time of first RTx had a significant positive influence on the final height (FH), whereas a longer duration of dialysis had a significant negative effect on the FH. Administration of rhGH after RTx played an important role in the achievement of a normal FH in 3 girls. No differences were observed between group A and B with respect to age at start of dialysis, chronological or bone age at first RTx, number of rejection episodes, duration of the study period from last RTx to FH, glomerular filtration rate during this study period, or percentage of time on prednisone therapy.

Conclusions: The FH is almost exclusively predetermined by the height achieved at the start of dialysis and at the time of first RTx. Therefore, to reach target adult height after RTx, the best strategy is to shorten the time of dialysis and to start rhGH administration at a young age and as early as possible during the course of chronic renal failure. Administration of rhGH after RTx is also highly effective, but, given its potential danger, still remains a matter of investigation.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Body Height*
  • Cohort Studies
  • Female
  • Growth / drug effects
  • Growth Disorders / drug therapy
  • Growth Disorders / etiology*
  • Human Growth Hormone / administration & dosage
  • Humans
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / complications*
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / surgery*
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / therapy
  • Kidney Transplantation*
  • Linear Models
  • Male
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Renal Dialysis
  • Retrospective Studies


  • Human Growth Hormone