Effect of smoking on kidney transplant outcomes: Analysis of the United States renal data system

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Journal Article

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Graft survival; Patient survival; Smoking; Smoking cessation; USRDS


Background. We investigated the effect of smoking on postkidney transplant outcomes in the United States Renal Data System. Methods. In a retrospective cohort of 41,705 adult Medicare primary renal transplant recipients in the United States Renal Data System database transplanted from January 1, 2000, to June 30, 2006, and followed through October 31, 2006, we assessed Medicare claims for smoking. The association between renal allograft loss and death and smoking as a time-dependent variable was assessed with Cox nonproportional hazards regression. Results. Of 41,705 Medicare primary adult renal transplant patients, there were 9.9% patients who had evidence of prior smoking and 4.6% patients with new claims for smoking after transplant. Incident smoking (new onset smokers) occurred at a mean of 1.29±0.88 years after transplant. In the adjusted analysis, factors associated with new smoking included male gender, history of drug or alcohol use, history of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and later year of transplant. Compared with never smokers, incident smoking after transplant was associated with increased risk of death-censored allograft loss (adjusted hazard ratio [AHR] 1.46 [95% confidence interval {CI}: 1.19-1.79]; P<0.001) and death (AHR 2.32 [95% CI: 1.98-2.72]; P<0.001). In a sensitivity analysis excluding patients with history of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, similar results were obtained with increased risk of death-censored allograft loss (AHR 1.43 [95% CI: 1.16-1.76]; P=0.001) and death (AHR 2.26 [95% CI: 1.91-2.66]; P<0.001). DISCUSSION.: Incident smoking was detrimental to graft and patient survival. Transplant programs should screen those at risk during transplant follow-up and have smoking cessation programs. © 2011 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.

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