Author(s): Keith DS, Demattos A, Golconda M, Prather J, Norman D
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Abstract Donor-recipient age matching has been proposed as a means of improving overall outcomes in deceased donor renal transplantation. It was hypothesized that donor-recipient age matching would improve patient survival time in younger recipients while not adversely affecting patient survivals in older recipients because they seldom outlive their grafts. By use of data from United Network of Organ Sharing Standard Transplant and Analysis and Research Files 50,320 patients were identified who underwent a first deceased donor renal transplantation between January 1, 1990, and December 31, 1997. Adjusted patient survival and death-with-graft function patient survival were analyzed from the date of transplantation. Patient survival was affected by donor age for all recipient age groups, including recipients older than 55 yr. The effect of donor age on patient survival is greater than that seen with HLA matching. The effect of donor age on patient survival persisted even when censoring recipients in whom grafts failed before death, suggesting that both longevity and quality of graft function are important in patient survival. Donor-recipient age matching is occurring to a limited degree in this population. Donor-recipient age matching would improve survival in younger recipients but would adversely affect survival in older patients by reducing the availability of younger donor kidneys for this group. The issue of donor-recipient age matching needs to be debated among the public and transplantation community so that a logical and just system can be developed.
This article was published in J Am Soc Nephrol
and referenced in Journal of Gerontology & Geriatric Research