Assessment of cardiovascular risk in waiting-listed renal transplant patients: a single center experience in 558 cases


Corresponding author: Leonardi Gianluca, MD, Bramante, 88, 10126 Turin, Italy.
Tel.: +390116336797; fax: +390116336306;


Abstract:  Cardiac screening is recommended to prevent cardiovascular death after renal transplantation. This retrospective observational study illustrates the results of application of a cardiac assessment algorithm in a series of 558 renal transplant candidates at a single center in Turin, Italy. A dipyridamole-stress sestamibi myocardial scintiscan (DMS) performed in 302/558 (54.1%) cases was positive in 52 (17.2%), negative in 200 (66.2%), borderline in 16 (5.3%), and with signs of previous necrosis in 34 (11.4%). Coronary lesions detected by angiography in 48.1% of the 52 positives were treated medically (13.5%) or by percutaneous/surgical procedure (34.6%). Coronary lesions were detected in 14.1% of asymptomatic population subgroup. The minor and major cardiovascular event rates and the cardiovascular death rate were 1.9%, 0%, and 0%, respectively, in positive DMS group (high-cardiological risk) vs. 10%, 4.5%, and 3.5% in the negatives (p > 0.5; n.s.). It is suggested that not increased cardiovascular event or deaths rates in the high-risk group reflect early coronary lesion detection and correction. Since 55.9% of cardiovascular events or deaths occurred in the negative group more than 24 months after the DMS, its mandatory repetition every two yr after a negative finding is recommended.