Nowadays, a repeat transplantation is considered to confer a better survival advantage to patients over dialysis. The cost-effectiveness of transplantation for end-stage renal disease patients shows benefits over dialysis even for re-transplanted patients.
Patients who have a second kidney transplant may not be as bound for failure as once thought, researchers said here.
In a retrospective, single-center study, there were no significant differences in graft survival at one and five years between primary and secondary transplants among end-stage renal disease (ESRD) patients.
"The outcomes were very comparable. "Even with a second transplant, graft function, length of survival, and complications were all comparable" to a primary transplant.
Some earlier research had shown inferior long-term outcomes when kidney patients are re-transplanted, and researchers have considered second transplants to carry high immunologic risks.
But there's been an overall lack of data on outcomes, especially since survival in kidney transplants has improved during the last few decades.
Although the majority of ESRD patients go on dialysis, about 16% to 17% receive a primary transplant. Among those, the same proportion also go on to receive a second transplant when the first graft fails adding typical survival for a first graft is about eight years.
Overall, there is no significant difference between primary and repeat transplants in terms of graft survival at one and five years.
Nor were there any significant differences in graft rejection (P=0.35), length of time to rejection (P=0.45), or serum creatinine at one and five years (P=0.70 and P=0.46, respectively).
And there is no differences in terms of infection, and attributed the overall lack of difference in outcome to modern immunosuppression.