Outcomes of pancreas transplantation in older versus younger recipients: a comparative analysis

Surg Today. 2021 Oct;51(10):1655-1664. doi: 10.1007/s00595-021-02284-8. Epub 2021 Apr 12.


Purpose: The feasibility of pancreas transplantation (PT) in older recipients remains a matter of debate. We examined the influence of recipient age on PT outcomes and identified the prognostic factors for older recipients.

Methods: We compared the outcomes of PT in recipients aged < 50 years (younger group; n = 285) with those in recipients aged ≥ 50 years (older group; n = 94). Prognostic factors in the older group were analyzed by a logistic regression model and the influence of recipient age on survival outcomes were analyzed using propensity score matching.

Results: The patient survival rate was significantly worse in the older group (P < 0.001). Patient death from infection or/and multiple organ failure or cardiac/cerebrovascular events was also more frequent in the older group than in the younger group (P = 0.012 and P = 0.045, respectively). A longer duration of diabetes was an independent risk factor of 1-year mortality in the older group. In a propensity score-matched comparison, the older recipients (n = 77) had significantly poorer survival than the younger recipients (n = 77) (P = 0.026).

Conclusions: PT should be considered with appropriate caution, especially for older recipients with a long duration of diabetes.

Keywords: Elderly recipient; Pancreas transplantation; Patient survival; Recipient age.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Cardiovascular Diseases
  • Cause of Death
  • Diabetes Mellitus
  • Feasibility Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Logistic Models
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Multiple Organ Failure
  • Pancreas / surgery*
  • Pancreas Transplantation* / mortality
  • Prognosis
  • Propensity Score
  • Stroke
  • Survival Rate
  • Treatment Outcome