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Keywords:

  • chronic allograft failure;
  • hemodialysis;
  • HCV infection;
  • renal transplantation

Abstract:  The presence of hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection has been found to adversely affect the morbidity and mortality rates in the dialysis population. Renal transplantation is a treatment option after a careful pre-transplant evaluation. We designed this study to find the impact of HCV infection on patient survival, co-morbidity and allograft survival in a selected group of hemodialysis (HD) and transplant population. We retrospectively analyzed 116 renal transplant patients (94 HCV-negative, 22 HCV-positive) and 136 HD patients (106 HCV-negative, 30 HCV-positive) who had renal transplantation or underwent dialysis before 1996. The HCV-infected patients were evaluated by liver biopsy for the absence of advanced liver disease before transplantation. There was no clinical or laboratory decompensation of liver disease in transplant and dialysis patient groups. The overall 5-yr survival rates were 85.2% for renal transplant recipients and 74.5% for those on HD. The comparison results revealed a significant difference between HCV-infected patients with and without transplantation. The 3-yr renal allograft survival rates were comparable in HCV-positive and -negative patients, but the risk of chronic allograft nephropathy (CAN) and graft failure were higher at the fifth year in HCV-positive patients. In conclusion, renal transplantation should the preferred therapy in HCV-infected dialysis patients as it improves the survival rates. The presence of HCV infection increases the CAN rate and the influence on allograft survival is evident at the fifth year of assessment.