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Curr Opin Organ Transplant. 2011 Feb;16(1):110-5. doi: 10.1097/MOT.0b013e3283424d1f.

Pancreas transplantation for type 2 diabetes mellitus.

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Wake Forest Institute for Regenerative Medicine, Winston Salem, North Carolina 27106, USA.



This review will provide evidence that selected patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) may benefit from vascularized pancreas transplantation (PTX).


Initial experience with simultaneous pancreas-kidney transplantation (SPKT) in patients with T2DM and end-stage renal disease (ESRD) suggested that augmentation of endogenous insulin production by PTX in patients with C-peptide-positive, insulin-requiring diabetes resulted in insulin independence, improved glucose counter-regulation, and enhanced quality of life. A number of single-center retrospective studies have documented equivalent outcomes in patients with either type 1 diabetes mellitus (T1DM) or T2DM undergoing predominantly SPKT, although clearly a selection bias exists for patients in the latter category. Selection criteria for SPKT in T2DM include patients less than 55-60 years of age with a BMI less than 30-32 kg/m², insulin-requiring for a minimum of 5 years with a total daily insulin requirement less than 1 u/kg/day, a fasting C-peptide level less than 10 ng/ml, absence of severe vascular disease or tobacco abuse, adequate cardiac function, and presence of 'complicated' diabetes. Data from the International Pancreas Transplant Registry show that up to 7% of SPKT recipients are classified as having T2DM and that outcomes in these patients are comparable to those undergoing SPKT and classified as having T1DM.


Consequently, characterization of the 'type' of diabetes may be irrelevant and insulin-requiring diabetic patients with ESRD should be evaluated for PTX based exclusively on their predicted ability to tolerate the surgical procedure and requisite immunosuppression as well as comply with a stringent posttransplant follow-up regimen.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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