Purpose: To investigate the incidence, risk factors, and associated mortality of fractures in renal transplant recipients.
Methods: Retrospective registry study of 33,479 patients in the United States Renal Data System (USRDS) who received kidney transplants between 1 July 1994 and 30 June 1997. Associations with hospitalizations for a primary discharge diagnosis of fractures (all causes) were assessed.
Results: Renal transplant recipients had an adjusted incidence ratio for fractures of 4.59 (95% confidence interval 3.29 to 6.31). In multivariate analysis, recipients with prevalent fractures, as well as recipients who were Caucasian, women, in the lower quartiles of recipient weight (<95.9 kg), had end stage renal disease caused by diabetes, and had prolonged pretransplant dialysis were at increased risk for hospitalization because of fractures after transplantation. Recipients hospitalized for hip fractures had decreased all-cause survival (hazard ratio for mortality 1.60, 95% CI 1.13 to 2.26) in Cox Regression analysis.
Conclusions: In the early post-transplant course (<3 years), renal transplant recipients had a greater incidence of fractures than the general population, which were associated with decreased patient survival. Preventive efforts should focus on recipients with the risk factors identified in this analysis, most of which can be easily obtained through history and physical examination.