Transplantation of kidneys from donors at increased risk for blood-borne viral infection: recipient outcomes and patterns of organ use

Am J Transplant. 2009 Oct;9(10):2338-45. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-6143.2009.02782.x. Epub 2009 Aug 21.


Kidney transplantation from deceased donors classified as increased risk for viral infection by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) is controversial. Analyses of Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network (OPTN) data from 7/1/2004 to 7/1/2006 were performed. The primary cohort included 48 054 adults added to the kidney transplant wait list. Compared to receiving a standard criteria donor (SCD) kidney or remaining wait-listed, CDC recipients (HR 0.80, p = 0.18) had no significant difference in mortality. In a secondary cohort of 19 872 kidney recipients at 180 centers, SCD (reference) and CDC (HR 0.91, p = 0.16) recipients had no difference in the combined endpoint of allograft failure or death. Among centers performing >10 kidney transplants during the study period, the median proportion of CDC transplants/total transplants was 7.2% (range 1.1-35.6%). Higher volume transplant centers were more likely to use CDC kidneys compared to low and intermediate volume centers (p < 0.01). An analysis of procured kidneys revealed that 6.8% of SCD versus 7.8% of CDC (p = 0.13) kidneys were discarded. In summary, center use of CDC kidneys varied widely, and recipients had good short-term outcomes. OPTN should collect detailed data about long-term outcomes and recipient viral testing so the potential risks of CDC kidneys can be fully evaluated.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Blood-Borne Pathogens*
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, U.S.
  • Cohort Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Kidney Transplantation*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Tissue Donors*
  • Treatment Outcome
  • United States
  • Virus Diseases / transmission*