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Medical Science Monitor Basic Research


eISSN: 2329-0358

The Medically Complex Living Kidney Donor: Glucose Metabolism as Principal Cause of Donor Declination

Martina Guthoff, Silvio Nadalin, Andreas Fritsche, Alfred Königsrainer, Hans-Ulrich Häring, Nils Heyne

Department of Endocrinology and Diabetology, Angiology, Nephrology and Clinical Chemistry, University of Tübingen, Tübingen, Germany

Ann Transplant 2016; 21:39-45

DOI: 10.12659/AOT.895729

Available online:

Published: 2016-01-26


BACKGROUND: Transplant centers are increasingly confronted with medically complex living kidney donor candidates. Considerable differences exist among centers regarding handling of these patients and little data is available on characteristics, evaluation outcome and declination criteria. We now demonstrate impaired glucose metabolism to be the largest single cause of donor declination.
MATERIAL AND METHODS: Follow-up of 133 donor-recipient pairs, presenting to our transplant center between 03/2007 and 06/2012 was included in the analysis. Evaluation outcome of donor-recipient pairs was assessed and declinations stratified into donor or recipient reasons and underlying conditions.
RESULTS: 65 donor-recipient pairs (49%) were accepted for transplantation, 68 (51%) were declined upon first evaluation. 77% of declinations were for donor- and 23% for recipient reasons. Almost half of donor declinations resulted from increased cardiovascular risk with the presence of diabetes mellitus or prediabetes as the largest single cause of declination.
CONCLUSIONS: Glucose metabolism is key in donor risk assessment and precludes kidney donation if abnormal. The high prevalence emphasizes the need for prevention. Prediabetes defines a cohort at risk and response to lifestyle intervention allows for individual risk stratification, thereby potentially increasing the number of persons eligible for kidney donation. Unification of evaluation criteria, as well as prospective long-term follow-up is required to account for increasingly complex living kidney donors.

Keywords: Diabetes Mellitus, Donor Selection, Glucose Metabolism Disorders, Kidney Transplantation, Living Donors, Prediabetic State