Predictors of postoperative cardiovascular complications up to 3 months after kidney transplantation

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Background: Renal transplant patients have a high peri-operative risk for cardiovascular events. Pre-operative screening for cardiac ischaemia might lower this risk, but there are no specific guidelines. Methods: We conducted a chart review for all renal transplants performed between January 2010 and December 2013. We collected data about patient characteristics, pre-operative cardiac evaluation before referral, diagnostic tests and interventions. Logistic regression analyses were then applied to relate these factors to the composite endpoint of cardiac death, myocardial infarction, coronary revascularisation or admission for heart failure within 3 months after transplantation. Results: A total of 770 kidney transplants were performed in 751 patients. In 750 cases (97%) a referral to the cardiologist was made. Non-invasive ischaemia detection by myocardial perfusion scintigraphy, exercise stress test or dobutamine stress echocardiography was carried out in 631 cases (82%). Coronary angiography was performed in 85 cases, which revealed significant coronary artery disease in 19 cases. Prophylactic revascularisation was done in 7 cases. The incidence of the study endpoint was 8.6%. In multivariable regression analysis, age at transplantation, pre-transplant myocardial infarction or heart failure, post-operative decrease in haemoglobin and positive non-invasive ischaemia testing were significantly associated with the study endpoint. However, when analysed separately, none of the different non-invasive ischaemia detection modalities were related to the study endpoint. Conclusion: Especially those renal transplant candidates with a cardiac history carry a high risk for a cardiovascular event post-transplantation. Uniformity in cardiac screening of renal transplant candidates and better pre-operative preparation might lower this post-operative risk. Besides, post-transplant anaemia should be prevented.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)202-209
Number of pages8
JournalNetherlands Heart Journal
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2020

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