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Am J Nephrol. 1995;15(4):318-22.

Association of post-renal transplant erythrocytosis and microalbuminuria: response to angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibition.

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Department of Medicine and Surgery, Baystate Medical Center, Springfield, Mass. 01199, USA.


Angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitor therapy has recently been shown to be effective in the treatment of post-renal transplant erythrocytosis (PTE). In an attempt to assess the effect of drug treatment on serum erythropoietin level, glomerular filtration rate, and urinary protein excretion, we prospectively evaluated 8 consecutive cadaveric renal transplant recipients with PTE treated with ACE inhibitor therapy for 3 months. In response to ACE inhibition, the mean hematocrit (HCT) value decreased from 53.7 +/- 0.6% before treatment to 42.7 +/- 2.2% at the conclusion of the study (p = 0.03). However, 1 patient failed to respond to ACE inhibition (HCT > 50%), and 2 patients with PTE developed anemia (HCT < 35%) while maintained on drug treatment. Although the mean serum erythropoietin level decreased during ACE inhibition (from 22.8 +/- 8.4 to 9.4 +/- 5.3 mU/ml; p = 0.06), a consistent change in individual erythropoietin levels was not identified. At the conclusion of the study, the serum erythropoietin levels were undetectable in 4 patients, decreased in 1, unchanged in 2, and increased in the only patient with PTE who failed to respond to drug treatment. All patients tolerated the ACE inhibitor therapy without developing cough or hyperkalemia. In addition, serum creatinine levels, 125I-iothalamate clearances, and mean arterial blood pressures were unchanged throughout the study. Microalbuminuria (spot urinary albumin/creatinine ratio between 30 and 200 mg/g) developed in 5 patients with PTE and coincided with the onset of erythrocytosis (25.2 +/- 7 mg/g before PTE and 76.3 +/- 36.7 mg/g at the time of PTE detection).(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS).

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