Kidney transplant complications and obesity

Am J Surg. 2009 Mar;197(3):424-6. doi: 10.1016/j.amjsurg.2008.11.021.


Objective: To determine the rate of graft failure and complications secondary to morbid obesity in kidney transplant patients at our institution.

Methods: A retrospective study involving recipients renal transplants from 2002 to 2007. Patients were divided into 3 groups: group 1, body mass index (BMI) >35 underwent a diet plan and gained weight posttransplant; group 2, BMI >35 underwent successful diet modifications posttransplant; and group 3, BMI <35 did not undergo a diet regimen.

Results: Sixty-six patients were studied. Group 1 patients, (n = 21, BMI >35) had higher postoperative complications, longer operative time, and longer hospital stay when compared with their obese counterparts group 3 (n = 23, BMI <35). We saw no significant change in postoperative complications between group 2 and group 3 (n = 22, BMI > 35).

Conclusions: Worse graft function and complications were seen with patients who gained weight post operatively. Conversely, a good outcome was seen with those patients that lost weight pre and post operatively. The results of this study may open the field for pretransplant weight loss procedures to improve quality of life, nutrition, and overall health of transplant candidates.

MeSH terms

  • Graft Survival
  • Humans
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / complications
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / surgery*
  • Kidney Transplantation / adverse effects*
  • Obesity, Morbid / complications*
  • Retrospective Studies