Risk of end-stage renal disease among liver transplant recipients with pretransplant renal dysfunction

R. Ruebner, D. Goldberg, P. L. Abt, R. Bahirwani, M. Levine, D. Sawinski, R. D. Bloom, P. P. Reese

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

67 Scopus citations


Guidelines recommend restricting simultaneous liver-kidney (SLK) transplant to candidates with prolonged dialysis or estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) <30 mL/min/1.73m2 for 90 days. However, few studies exist to support the latter recommendation. Using Scientific Registry of Transplant Recipients and Medicare dialysis data, we assembled a cohort of 4997 liver transplant recipients from February 27, 2002-January 1, 2008. Serial eGFRs were calculated from serum creatinines submitted with MELD reports. We categorized recipients by eGFR patterns in the 90 days pretransplant: Group 1 (eGFR always <30), Group 2 (eGFR fluctuated), Group 3 (eGFR always <30) and Group 4 (short-term dialysis). For Group 2, we characterized fluctuations in renal function using time-weighted mean eGFR. Among liver-alone recipients in Group 3, the rate of end-stage renal disease (ESRD) by 3 years was 31%, versus <10% for other groups (p < 0.001). In multivariable Cox regression, eGFR Group, diabetes (HR 2.65, p < 0.001) and black race (HR 1.83, p = 0.02) were associated with ESRD. Among liver-alone recipients in Group 2, only diabetics with time-weighted mean eGFR <30 had a substantial ESRD risk (25.6%). In summary, among liver transplant candidates not on prolonged dialysis, SLK should be considered for those whose eGFR is always <30 and diabetic candidates whose weighted mean eGFR is <30 for 90 days.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2958-2965
Number of pages8
JournalAmerican Journal of Transplantation
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • Chronic kidney disease
  • diabetes complications
  • end-stage renal disease
  • liver transplantation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Transplantation
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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