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Transpl Int. 1993 Jan;6(1):45-9.

Gastrointestinal complications in renal transplantation.

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Department of Urology, Hôpital de Bicêtre, Université Paris-Sud, France.


One wonders whether the use of cyclosporin, histamine receptor antagonists, low doses of steroids, and early diagnosis and treatment actually modify the incidence, morbidity, and mortality of gastrointestinal (GI) and pancreatic complications in renal transplantation. To find out, we reviewed 614 kidney transplant recipients between January 1984 and December 1988. One hundred patients (16.2%) were found to have GI and/or pancreatic complications in the following distribution: 9.6% gastroduodenal, 1.3% pancreatic, 4% colonic, and 0.4% small bowel. None of the patients presenting a gastroduodenal ulcer had perforation or bleeding. Fifty-five percent of the patients with this complication had a past history of eso-gastroduodenal disease, compared to 19.6% in recipients without gastroduodenal complications. Some 4.4% of the patients had a small bowel or a colonic complication and four died of peritonitis due to bowel perforation. Mortality was 35% in those having intestinal resection and/or perforation with peritonitis. Sixteen percent of patients with colonic complications had a known history of diverticula, compared to 3% for those without colonic complications. The incidence of GI and/or pancreatic complications in renal transplant recipients remains high and has caused 1.1% of the deaths in our series. Mortality is essentially due to upper GI bleeding, peritonitis following perforation, and infectious colitis. Better detection of gastroduodenal and colonic disease before transplantation seems to be mandatory. Prevention with histamine H2 receptor antagonists and early surgical treatment of complicated colonic diverticula help to reduce the morbidity and mortality in kidney graft recipients.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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