- Top of page
- Recommendations of the Working Group
- Contacting the CDC
- Executive Summary of Recommendations
Donor-derived transmission of Trypanosoma cruzi, the etiologic agent of Chagas disease, has emerged as an issue in the United States over the past 10 years. Acute T. cruzi infection causes substantial morbidity and mortality in the posttransplant setting if not recognized and treated early. We assembled a working group of transplant infectious disease specialists, laboratory medicine specialists, organ procurement organization representatives and epidemiologists with expertise in Chagas disease. Based on review of published and unpublished data, the working group prepared evidence-based recommendations for donor screening, and follow-up testing and treatment of recipients of organs from infected donors. We advise targeted T. cruzi screening of potential donors born in Mexico, Central America and South America. Programs can consider transplantation of kidneys and livers from T. cruzi-infected donors with informed consent from recipients. However, we recommend against heart transplantation from infected donors. For other organs, we recommend caution based on the anticipated degree of immunosuppression. Our recommendations stress the need for systematic monitoring of recipients by polymerase chain reaction, and microscopy of buffy coat and advance planning for immediate antitrypanosomal treatment if recipient infection is detected. Data on management and outcomes of all cases should be collected to inform future guidelines and to assist in coordination with public health authorities.