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A Journal on Nephrology and Urology

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Minerva Urologica e Nefrologica 2011 March;63(1):35-44

language: English

Patients with a failed renal transplant

Marcén R., Teruel Briones J. L.

Department of Nephrology, Ramón y Cajal Hospital, University of Alcalá de Henares, Madrid, Spain


Despite the advances in the care of recipients and in immunosuppression, long-term graft survival has experienced little improvement in the last 10 years. An important number of recipients present progressive loss of graft function and have to be readmitted on dialysis therapy. Before starting dialysis, these patients are re-exposed to the complications of chronic renal failure but there are no specific guidelines for their treatment. The Kidney Disease Quality Initiative Advisory Board clinical practice guidelines given for the non-transplant chronic kidney disease patients have been recommended for ameliorating their clinical situation and the rate of progression of graft failure. The time when dialysis has to be restarted and the type of dialysis procedure, hemodialysis or peritoneal dialysis, are under discusion. But there is no evidence about the superiority of either type of dialysis procedure. Systematic graft nephrectomy has been considered to improve the inflammatory status of the patients with a failed graft which could contribute to a worse control of some complications such as anemia and to the increased rates of cardiovascular mortality. As in the patients with primary end-stage renal disease, retransplantation is the best treatment for a patient with a failed graft. Due to the shortage of organs for transplantation the number of patients who are retransplanted has remained stable. Recurrent diseases such as glomerulonephritis, lyphoproliferative diseases, BK virus nephopathy and previous non-adherence to the treatment do not necessarily preclude retransplantation.

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