, Volume 31, Issue 4, pp 959-963
Date: 15 Nov 2012

Impact of transplant nephrectomy on retransplantation: a single-center retrospective study

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Kidney retransplantation is the best treatment option for transplanted patients returning to dialysis. The aim of this study was to explore the effect of removal of a failed graft on the outcome of a subsequent transplant.


We identified 140 patients who underwent retransplantation at our institution. Retrospective comparison was performed between patients undergoing kidney retransplantation with (group A, n = 28) and without (group B, n = 112) preliminary nephrectomy. Graft and patient survival were calculated by the Kaplan–Meier method.


After a mean follow-up of 64.5 months, patients survival was comparable between the two groups (group A = 68.6 vs. group B = 63.5 months; p = 0.6). Mean graft survival was 65.5 versus 56.0 months in group A and B, respectively (p = 0.14). Surgical complications after retransplantation were significantly higher in group A compared to group B (57.1 vs. 19.6 %; p = 0.0002). There was no significant difference between the two groups in the panel reactive antibody level at the time of retransplantation (group A = 20 % vs. group B = 32 %; p = 0.22). The acute rejection rate was 35.7 % in group A and 25 % in group B (p = 0.36). The risk of delayed graft function was not significantly increased in group A (p = 0.63). Finally, 2 years after retransplantation, patients who had not undergone nephrectomy had lower serum creatinine concentrations (1.3 vs. 1.7 mg/dl; p = 0.01) and higher estimated GFR (77.9 vs. 59.3 ml/min/1.73 m2; p = 0.02).


Our experience shows that there is no advantage in performing allograft nephrectomy before retransplantation, and that this procedure does not seem to significantly influence the survival of a subsequent graft.

Giuseppe Lucarelli and Antonio Vavallo contributed equally to this study.