New England Journal of Medicine Publishes Results From Methodist Specialty and Transplant Hospital San Antonio Showing Significant Increased Access to Live Donor Kidney Transplantation With Kidney Paired Donation Program
SAN ANTONIO, Texas, Sept. 8 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — The Texas Transplant Institute kidney transplant program at Methodist Specialty and Transplant Hospital (MSTH) in San Antonio, Texas, home of the nation’s largest live donor kidney transplant program in 2009*, published in today’s New England Journal of Medicine that they have increased access to live donor kidney transplantation by 34% with kidney paired donation (KPD). The paired donor program identifies living donors who wish to donate their kidney but cannot because of blood or tissue incompatibility with the recipient. Incompatible pairs are matched with other incompatible pairs, and the donors are exchanged, resulting in compatible transplant combinations. In the 26 month study, the KPD transplant program reported 83 exchange transplants, including 22 two-way and 13 three-way exchanges with only a single transplant rejection episode and no transplant rejection losses. In the last 12 months of the study, the team performed a total of 180 live donor kidney transplants, of which 61 were KPD transplants. The article notes that if this productivity with KPD transplantation could be replicated on a national level it would potentially result in 2,000 additional live donor kidney transplants annually and reduce the number of patients on the waiting list.
In the MSTH study, recipient/donor pairs who were not a match were placed into a computer database that finds compatible combinations with other non-matching pairs. Since all recipients in the study received a matched kidney, expensive and potentially risky therapies such as desensitization techniques were not necessary. “Today’s publication in the New England Journal of Medicine highlights the need for all kidney transplant centers to offer an effective KPD program to patients with incompatible donors, particularly prior to desensitization attempts,” said Dr. Adam Bingaman, transplant surgeon, Director of the KPD program and lead author of the study.
Since beginning the program, the transplant team at MSTH has accumulated a database of incompatible pairs with more than 200 recipient candidates and 300 willing kidney donors. “The large size of our database has been a key to our success,” says Cathi Murphey, immunologist and laboratory director of the KPD program. The study demonstrates a marked rise in the number of KPD transplants done by the team after the database reached 100 recipient candidates.
According to United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS), there are more than 85,000 patients on the kidney transplant waiting list and wait times in many areas of the country now exceed five years. Approximately 4,500 patients die on the kidney transplant wait list each year. Kidney transplantation from a living donor is a preferred option compared with waiting for a deceased donor kidney since recipients of live donor transplants do not have to wait for years on the list and outcomes are significantly better. Live donor transplantation is limited, however, since recipients must be an immunologic match with their donor. It is estimated that more than 6,000 patients on the wait list have willing kidney donors who are not immunologically compatible. Dr. Francis Wright, transplant surgeon and Director of Organ Transplantation at MSTH, notes, “The success of our kidney paired donor program has broad national implications. No other development in the last 30 years has led to this level of increase in transplant opportunities.”
Methodist Specialty and Transplant Hospital is home of the nation’s largest live donor kidney transplant program in 2009. For more information about the Methodist Specialty and Transplant Hospital Kidney Paired Donation Program, phone 210-575-8425 or 1-800-888-0420.
For media interviews, contact:
Palmira Arellano, 210-325-2295
* 2009 source United Network for Organ Sharing
About Methodist Healthcare
Methodist Healthcare is the largest and most preferred health care system in South Texas with 24-facilities. Eight facilities are acute care hospitals: Methodist Hospital; Methodist Heart Hospital*; Methodist Children’s Hospital*; Methodist Specialty and Transplant Hospital*; Northeast Methodist Hospital*; Metropolitan Methodist Hospital*; Methodist Stone Oak Hospital and Methodist Ambulatory Surgery Hospital.
*A Methodist Hospital facility
SOURCE Methodist Healthcare