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Am J Transplant. 2006 Jul;6(7):1660-5.

Interpreting post-transplant proteinuria in patients with proteinuria pre-transplant.

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Mayo Clinic visiting clinicians, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota, USA.


Increasing numbers of patients receive kidney transplants before initiation of dialysis or shortly thereafter. Some of these patients have significant proteinuria pre-transplant making the interpretation of post-transplant proteinuria problematic. In this study, we evaluated post-transplant proteinuria in 115 patients who had urine protein measured within 3 months of transplant and assessed the association of proteinuria with allograft pathology. Proteinuria declined rapidly from 3650 +/- 3702 mg/day pre-transplant to 550 + 918 at 3 weeks (p < 0.0001) and continued to decline until 1 year post-transplant (472 +/- 1116, p < 0.0001 vs. 3 weeks). Proteinuria greater than 3000 mg/day was present in 48 patients (42%) pre-transplant, in 1 patient (1%) at 3 weeks and in 4 patients (4%) at 1 year. Surveillance graft biopsies were done at 1 year in 93% of patients. Proteinuria > or = 1500 mg/day and/or an absolute increase in proteinuria > 500 mg/day after 3 weeks post-transplant was associated with allograft glomerular pathology. In conclusion, pre-transplant proteinuria, even when high grade, declines rapidly after transplantation. Failure to decline or persistence of proteinuria greater than 1500 mg/day is indicative of allograft pathology.

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