Abdominal Radiology

, Volume 44, Issue 1, pp 218–226 | Cite as

Assessment of delayed graft function using susceptibility-weighted imaging in the early period after kidney transplantation: a feasibility study

  • Jun Sun
  • Shengnan Yu
  • Jie Chen
  • Zhaoyu Xing
  • Tingting Zha
  • Min Fan
  • Dexing Zeng
  • Wei XingEmail author



This study aimed to explore the feasibility of susceptibility-weighted imaging (SWI) for evaluating delayed graft function (DGF) during the early posttransplantation period.


Sixty-nine recipients who accepted allograft renal transplantation underwent SWI during the second posttransplantation week. Renal allograft function was estimated via the glomerular filtration rate. Recipients with and without DGF were identified. For each transplanted kidney, the presence of abnormal signal intensity lesions (ASILs), excluding benign lesions, on SWI was assessed. Renal allograft function was compared between the recipients with and without ASILs. The correlation between ASILs and renal allograft function was tested by Spearman’s rank correlation analysis.


Thirty-four recipients were diagnosed with DGF, while 35 recipients showed no DGF. In the DGF group, 16 recipients had low-intensity ASILs, primarily at the corticomedullary junction of transplanted kidneys on SWI, and no ASILs were found in 18 recipients. In the non-DGF group, none of the recipients showed ASILs on SWI. In the DGF group, the renal allograft function among the 16 recipients with low-intensity ASILs was significantly lower than that among the other 18 recipients (8.5 ± 4.2 vs. 19.7 ± 9.7 mL/min, P < 0.001). The presence of low-intensity ASILs on SWI showed a moderate negative correlation with renal allograft function in recipients with DGF (r = − 0.553, P = 0.001).


SWI can be used to evaluate DGF in the early post-kidney transplantation period.


Susceptibility-weighted imaging Diagnostic imaging Delayed graft function Kidney transplantation Magnetic resonance imaging 


Compliance with ethical standards


This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant Numbers 81771798), and major scientific and technological projects of the Changzhou Municipal Commission of Health and Family Planning (Grant Numbers ZD201509).

Conflict of interest

All authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest.

Ethical approval

All research procedures were conducted in accordance with the Declaration of Helsinki. The local ethics committee approved this retrospective study.

Informed consent

Informed consent was obtained from all participants included in the study.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jun Sun
    • 1
    • 2
  • Shengnan Yu
    • 1
  • Jie Chen
    • 1
  • Zhaoyu Xing
    • 3
  • Tingting Zha
    • 1
  • Min Fan
    • 3
  • Dexing Zeng
    • 2
  • Wei Xing
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of RadiologyThe Third Affiliated Hospital of Soochow UniversityChangzhouChina
  2. 2.Department of Medicine & RadiologyUniversity of PittsburghPittsburghUSA
  3. 3.Department of UrologyThe Third Affiliated Hospital of Soochow UniversityChangzhouChina

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