Changes in Causes of Death After Renal Transplantation, 1966 to 1987

Martha N. Hill, Robert A. Grossman, Harold I. Feldman, Shelley Hurwitz, Donald C. Dafoe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

67 Scopus citations


This descriptive study was undertaken to examine survival and changes in cause of death after renal transplantation. One fourth (259) of the 1,022 patients who received a renal transplant between 1966 and 1987 at the University of Pennsylvania had died by January 1, 1988. Causes of death for 246 (960) of the deceased patients were analyzed. Despite an increase in age and number of comorbid diseases before transplantation, posttransplant survival increased significantly over the study period. All-cause mortality rates at 1, 2, and 5 years decreased significantly. Infectious disease cumulative mortality rates at 1, 2, and 5 years also decreased between 1966 and 1985. No trend in the 1-, 2-, or 5-year cardiovascular disease cumulative mortality rates was detected. The decline in the rate of deaths due to infection led to a decrease in the proportion of infection-related deaths and an associated increase in the proportion of cardiovascular disease-related deaths. The reduction in mortality over the past 2 decades is associated with the simultaneous improvement in immunosuppression and treatment of infectious diseases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)512-518
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Journal of Kidney Diseases
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1991
Externally publishedYes


  • Renal/kidney transplantation
  • cause of death
  • mortality
  • survival

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nephrology


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