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Transplant Proc. 2015 Jul-Aug;47(6):1600-4. doi: 10.1016/j.transproceed.2015.02.022.

Retrospective Study of the Hungarian National Transplant Team's Cardiorespiratory Capacity.

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University of Physical Education, Budapest, Hungary. Electronic address:
University of Physical Education, Budapest, Hungary.
Hungarian Transplant Federation, Clinic of Transplantation and Surgery, Semmelweis University, Budapest, Hungary.


The low availability of donor organs requires long-term successful transplantation as an accepted therapy for patients with end-stage renal and liver diseases. The health benefits of regular physical activity are well known among healthy individuals as well as patients under rehabilitation programs. Our aim was to describe the cardiorespiratory capacity of the Hungarian National Transplant Team. Twenty-five kidney (n = 21) or liver (n = 4) transplant athletes participated in this study. Maximal cardiorespiratory capacity (VO2max) was measured on a treadmill with the use of gas analysis. After a resting pulmonary function test, subjects completed a vita maxima test until exhaustion. Aerobic capacity of transplant athletes was higher than the age- and sex-predicted cardiorespiratory fitness (VO2max, 109.9 ± 21.7% of the predicted values; P = .0101). Resting respiratory function indicators exceeded 80% of predicted age- and sex-matched normal values. There were positive correlations between VO2max and workload (r(2) = 0.40; P = .0463), metabolic equivalent (r(2) = 0.72; P < .0001), and oxygen pulse (r(2) = 0.30; P = .0039). However, age showed negative correlation with VO2max (r(2) = 0.32; P = .0031), and there was no significant correlation between graft age and maximal oxygen consumption (r(2) = 0.15; P = .4561). Although the small amount of participants can not represent the general kidney and liver transplant population, the excellent cardiorespiratory performance suggests that a normal level of physical capacity is available after transplantation and can be even higher with regular physical activity. This favorable physiologic background leads to a state that provides proper graft oxygenization, which is an important factor in long-term graft survival.

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