> Diabetes Research > Simultaneous Kidney and Pancreas Transplants Prove Beneficial

Simultaneous Kidney and Pancreas Transplants Prove Beneficial

Type 1 diabetics are given a new surge of hope as researchers from the University of Heidelberg in Germany suggest that getting a kidney transplant as well as a pancreas transplant can greatly improve the recipient’s survival over the long term. Although the reason behind this is still not fully known, researchers note that it maybe because of the enhanced glucose control achieved with the combined procedure.

Researchers studied 2,190 patients who received a living-donor kidney, 5,705 deceased-donor kidney recipients, and 3,525 undergoing simultaneous kidney-and-pancreas transplantation.

Results showed that consistent with prior research, those who received a deceased-donor kidney had an inferior survival rate. At the start of the study, those who got a simultaneous kidney-and-pancreas transplant had worse survival rate compared to the living-donor kidney group. But eventually, the kidney-and-pancreas group’s rate caught up and their beyond 10 years survival rate was found to be higher. Even after 10 years, the risk of death for the kidney-and-pancreas group was 45 percent lower than the living-donor kidney group.

“Our study shows that a functioning pancreas has a benefit for the simultaneously transplanted kidney, said lead study investigator Dr. Christian Morath in a prepared press statement. “At the same time, this procedure prolongs the survival of the patients, compared to a patient who received only a kidney transplant.”

Researchers suggest that based on the study results, all type 1 diabetics with kidney failure should be considered for simultaneous pancreas-kidney transplantation.

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