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Quality of life in diabetic recipients of kidney transplants is better with the addition of the pancreas.

Authors
  • Corry, R J
  • Zehr, P
Type
Published Article
Journal
Clinical transplantation
Publication Date
Aug 01, 1990
Volume
4
Issue
4
Pages
238–241
Identifiers
PMID: 10147629
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

The present study is an evaluation of the quality of life of 32 patients following successful pancreatic transplantation. These patients were studied at from 6 months to 5 years post-transplantation. Over one-half of them were beyond the 21/2-yr mark. A questionnaire was developed that focused on symptoms of neuropathy, enteropathy, and retinopathy. All of the patients evaluated had completely normal carbohydrate metabolism, as evidenced by normal fasting blood sugars and hemoglobin A1C levels. Twenty-one of the 32 patients had symptomatic neuropathy pre-operatively, and 11 of these reported substantial subjective improvement. Eight remained unchanged and 2 became worse. Twenty-four patients had symptoms of enteropathy and 23 noted improvement post-transplantation. Retinopathy symptoms were not improved, but there was a suggestion that after 3 or 31/2 yr progression did not occur as rapidly as earlier. Virtually all of the patients had mood improvements and considerably less fatigue. We have determined that the risk of the procedure when receiving simultaneous renal and pancreas grafts is not significantly greater than that associated with a kidney transplant alone. Patients who are not uremic, either those with a successful kidney graft or those preuremic patients, are better candidates if symptoms are present. The risk of immunosuppression is insignificant in those patients who already have a successful renal transplant and are already on immunosuppressant drugs. Pancreatic transplantation can substantially improve the quality of life in diabetic patients, and should be considered as a therapeutic measure.

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