Access to the Kidney Transplant Wait List


*Corresponding author: Bryce Kiberd,


The study examines selection for kidney transplantation and determines who are referred, how many had contraindications and whether comorbidity indices predict transplant status. Of 113 consecutive adult incident end-stage renal disease (ESRD) patients at this single center 47 (41.6%) were referred. Using published guidelines, 48 (42.5%) had a specific contraindication. However 26 (23%) were neither referred nor had contraindications. An ESRD mortality score, acute renal failure status and albumin were independent predictors of referral but only the mortality score was predictive of contraindication status. The Charlson and ESRD comorbidity indices were less predictive of contraindication or referral status. In a comparison of patients who were Candidates (referred and no contraindication, n = 39) compared to those who were Neither (not referred and no contraindications, n = 26), age was the most discriminating factor (c = 0.99, 95% CI 0.97–1.00). Comorbidity and mortality indices were inferior. Neither patients were older (75 ± 7 years) and had comorbidity scores that were higher than Candidates but similar to those with contraindications (ESRD index; Neither 3.3 ± 2.5, Candidate 1.4 ± 1.8, and contraindication 4.1 ± 3.4). Comorbitity indices do not help explain selection practices whereas age is an important discriminator. How many Neither patients would benefit from transplantation is not known.