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Am J Kidney Dis. 2005 Mar;45(3):502-9.

Comparison of ARF after myeloablative and nonmyeloablative hematopoietic cell transplantation.

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University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, Denver, CO 80262, USA.



Acute renal failure (ARF) occurs with significant frequency after myeloablative and nonmyeloablative allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT). Myeloablative (conventional) HCT is the standard of care for cure of various malignant disorders. The newer modality of nonmyeloablative ("mini-allo") HCT is reserved for patients with advanced age and comorbidities who are ineligible for myeloablative HCT. The present study compares the incidence of ARF between patients undergoing concurrent myeloablative and nonmyeloablative HCT in the same period at the same institution.


This retrospective cohort study from 1997 to 2003 compares 140 myeloablative and 129 nonmyeloablative patients from the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. Severity of ARF was classified into 4 grades based on the increase in serum creatinine levels in the first 100 days after HCT. Mortality was studied at 100 days and 1 year.


Nonmyeloablative patients were significantly older and had greater pretransplantation comorbidity at baseline. Despite this, patients undergoing myeloablative HCT had a greater incidence of severe ARF (grades 2 and 3, 73% versus 47%; P < 0.001). The incidence of dialysis also was 4-fold greater (12% versus 3%; P < 0.001) in the myeloablative than nonmyeloablative group. On multivariate analysis after controlling for baseline characteristics, myeloablative HCT was associated with a 4.8-fold greater incidence of ARF compared with nonmyeloablative HCT. Nonrelapse mortality also was greater in the myeloablative group at 100 days and 1 year.


The incidence and severity of ARF, as well as nonrelapse mortality, occurring after nonmyeloablative HCT is significantly lower compared with myeloablative HCT.

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