Hospitalizations for fungal infections after renal transplantation in the United States

Transpl Infect Dis. 2001 Dec;3(4):203-11. doi: 10.1034/j.1399-3062.2001.30404.x.


Fungal infections in renal transplant recipients have not been studied in a national population. Therefore, 33,420 renal transplant recipients in the United States Renal Data System from 1 July 1994 to 30 June 1997 were analyzed in a retrospective registry study of hospitalized fungal infections (FI). FI were most commonly associated with secondary diagnoses of esophagitis (68, 23.9%), pneumonia (57, 19.8%), meningitis (23, 7.6%), and urinary tract infection (29, 10.3%). Opportunistic organisms accounted for 95.4% of infections, led by candidiasis, aspergillosis, cryptococcosis, and zygomycosis. Most fungal infections (66%) had occurred by six months post-transplant, but only 22% by two months. In logistic regression analysis, end-stage renal disease due to diabetes, duration of pre-transplant dialysis, maintenance tacrolimus and allograft rejection were associated with FI. In Cox regression analysis, recipients with FI had a relative risk of mortality of 2.88 (95% CI=2.22-3.74) compared to all other recipients. Among FI, zygomycosis and aspergillosis were independently associated with both increased patient mortality and length of hospital stay. Most fungal infections in renal transplant recipients were opportunistic, occurred later than previously reported, and were associated with greatly decreased patient survival. Recipients with diabetes, prolonged pre-transplant dialysis, rejection, and tacrolimus immunosuppression should be considered high risk for FI.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Female
  • Hospitalization / statistics & numerical data*
  • Humans
  • Kidney Transplantation / adverse effects
  • Length of Stay
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Mycoses / epidemiology*
  • Mycoses / etiology*
  • Mycoses / mortality
  • Opportunistic Infections / microbiology
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • United States / epidemiology