Author(s): Schnuelle P, Berger S, de Boer J, Persijn G, van der Woude FJ
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Abstract BACKGROUND: In a recent single-center study, donor use of catecholamines was identified to reduce kidney allograft rejection. This study investigates the effects of donor employment of adrenergic agents on graft survival in a large data base, including liver and heart transplants. METHODS: The study was based on the registry of the Eurotransplant International Foundation including 2415 kidney, 755 liver, and 720 heart transplants performed between January 1 and December 31, 1993. A total of 1742 donor record forms referring to the cadaveric donor activities in 1993 were systematically reviewed with regard to employment of adrenergic agents. Catecholamine use was simply coded dichotomously and divided into three strata according to zero, single, and combined application. Multivariate Cox regression including age, gender, cause of brain death, cold ischemia, HLA-mismatching, number of previous transplants, and urgency in liver transplants was applied for statistical analysis. RESULTS: Donor employment of catecholamines was associated with increased 4-year graft survival after kidney transplantation (hazard ratio [HR], 0.85; 95\% confidence interval [95\% CI], 0.74-0.98). The benefit is conferred in a dose-dependent manner and compares in quantitative terms with prospective HLA matching on class I and class II antigens (HR, 0.90; 95\% CI, 0.84-0.97). Use of norepinephrine was predictive of initial nonfunction after heart transplantation (HR, 1.66; 95\% CI, 1.14-2.43), but did not compromise liver grafts (HR, 0.94; 95\% CI, 0.67-1.32). CONCLUSIONS: Optimizing the management of brain-dead organ donors, including the possibility of selective administration of adrenergic agents, may provide a major benefit on graft survival without adverse side effects for the recipients. Further investigation on best use of adrenergic drugs, optimum dosage, and duration is warranted.
This article was published in Transplantation
and referenced in Journal of Anesthesia & Clinical Research