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Diabet Med. 1999 Jul;16(7):533-43.

Vascularized pancreas allotransplantation--clinical indications and outcome.

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Department of Surgery, University of Leicester, Leicester General Hospital, UK.



This review examines the status of vascularized pancreas transplantation as a treatment for Type 1 diabetes mellitus (DM).


The world literature, with a particular emphasis on data from the International Pancreas Transplant Registry (IPTR), is reviewed and interpreted particularly for clinical indications and outcome.


Over 9000 cases of vascularized pancreas transplant (VPT) have been registered, with insulin dependence approaching 82% at 1 year with 94% patient survival. The majority of transplants are simultaneous pancreas and kidney (SPK) transplants, with far fewer pancreas after kidney (PAK) or pancreas transplants alone (PTA). The success rates differ between the procedures but are generally improving as technical advances, improvements in immunosupression and greater experience are gained. The most obvious advantage is an improved quality of life (QoL) but there are risks associated with the procedure and with the immunosuppression. There is some evidence coming to light of a very slow beneficial effect on microvascular complications.


VPT is an attractive option to offer Type 1 DM patients who need or already have a renal allograft. Patients have to decide between the increased surgical risk and the risks of long-term immunosuppression and the benefits of improved QoL. In the absense of end-stage renal failure (ESRF) there is no justification for PTA, except where the diabetes itself poses a greater risk to life than the transplantation procedure.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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