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One Institution's Experience With Pancreas Transplantation

Authors
Publication Date
Source
PMC
Keywords
  • High-Tech Medicine
Disciplines
  • Medicine

Abstract

The University of Minnesota has the largest experience with pancreas transplantation of any institution, with 130 cases since 1966, including 116 in 98 patients between July 1978 and June 1985. Currently, 30 patients are insulin-independent, 19 for greater than one year, the longest for seven years. One-year patient and graft survival rates overall are 87% and 30%, respectively. Of 98 recipients, 49 had had previous kidney transplants, while 49 had not, and currently most of the pancreas recipients do not have uremia and have not had a kidney transplant but have early complications of diabetes. A total of 44 of the grafts were procured from related and 72 from cadaver donors. Although 32 of the 116 grafts (28%) failed for technical reasons, the most common cause of graft failure has been rejection. Various immunosuppressive regimens have been used in attempts to reduce the rejection rate, and one combination, low-dose cyclosporine-azathioprine-prednisone (triple therapy), has been particularly effective, with a one-year functional survival rate of 73% in recipients of technically successful grafts from human leukocyte antigen-mismatched cadaver or related donors (N = 20). The pancreas graft survival rates have improved gradually (43% for 1984 to 1985, N = 30; versus 27% for 1978 to 1983, N = 86) for transplants from both related and cadaver donors. Metabolic studies from most recipients with functioning grafts (insulin-independent) show normal or nearly normal results. Preliminary observations on secondary complications suggest a more favorable course in recipients whose grafts have functioned long term than in those whose grafts failed early.

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