Posttransplant malignancies in solid organ adult recipients: an analysis of the U.S. National Transplant Database

Transplantation. 2012 Nov 27;94(10):990-8. doi: 10.1097/TP.0b013e318270bc7b.


Background: De novo posttransplant malignancy (PTM) is a serious complication of transplantation. Incidences may vary among solid organ transplantations (SOTs) and may take to particular screening recommendations and posttransplantation care.

Methods: Adult recipients, from the U.S. Organ Procurement Transplant Network/United Network for Organ Sharing database (data as of September 3, 2010), of a primary kidney transplantation (KT), liver transplantation (LT), heart transplantation (HT) or lung transplantation (LuT) performed in the United States between 1999 and 2008 were selected. Multiple-organ recipients and those whose grafts failed within 2 weeks after transplantation were excluded. The incidence of PTM (in 1000 person-years) was estimated using the Kaplan-Meier product-limit method and compared with SOT and the general population.

Results: The cohort included 193,905 recipients (123,380 KT; 43,106 LT; 16511 HT; and 10,908 LuT). PTM incidence was 8.03, 11.0, 14.3, and 19.8 in KT, LT, HT, and LuT, respectively. In general, PTM recipients were 3 to 5 years older, mostly whites, and are males in all SOTs. In KT, the type of cancer with the highest incidence was posttransplant lymphoproliferative disorder (PTLD, 1.58%), followed by lung (1.12%), prostate (0.82%), and kidney (0.79%) cancers; in LT, PTLD (2.44%), lung and bronchial (2.18%), primary hepatic (0.91%), and prostate (0.88%) cancers; in HT, lung and bronchial (3.24%) and prostate (3.07%) cancers, and PTLD (2.24%); and in LuT, lung and bronchial cancers (5.94%), PTLD (5.72%), and colorectal cancer (1.38%). PTLD, Kaposi sarcoma, and lung and bronchial cancers were increased in all SOTs, when compared with an older (55- to 59-year-old) population.

Conclusions: Cancer incidence is different among solid organ transplantations, and ratios may be higher than those in the 55- to 59-year-old population.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Databases, Factual / statistics & numerical data
  • Female
  • Heart Transplantation / statistics & numerical data*
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Kaplan-Meier Estimate
  • Kidney Transplantation / statistics & numerical data*
  • Liver Transplantation / statistics & numerical data*
  • Lung Transplantation / statistics & numerical data*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasms / epidemiology*
  • Postoperative Complications / epidemiology*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • United States / epidemiology