Symptoms of Kidney Failure Decreased Months After Transplantation, Study Finds
Investigators discovered that kidney failure symptoms tended to increase or remain unchanged between transplant evaluation and transplantation; however, three months after transplantation, 9 of 11 symptoms lessened.
Investigators have found that symptoms of kidney failure lessened three months after transplantation, according to a recent study in CJASN. In a study of patients waiting for a kidney transplant, those who experienced various symptoms had a higher risk of dying while on the waitlist. Symptoms tended to increase or remain unchanged between transplant evaluation and transplantation; however, three months after transplantation, 9 of 11 symptoms lessened.
“To our knowledge this is the first longitudinal study of symptoms in kidney transplant candidates and recipients, rather than dialysis patients,” the authors explain. “Interestingly, the symptom burden was higher in younger patients possibly due to changing expectations about how they perceive symptoms as they age.”
Investigators analyzed information on 1,298 kidney transplant candidates and 521 kidney transplant recipients. Candidates reported being moderately to extremely bothered by fatigue (32%), dry skin (27%), muscle soreness (26%), and itchy skin (25%); 16% reported high and 21% reported very high symptom burden. During a median follow-up of 1.9 years, 12% of patients died on the waitlist, and those with very high symptom burden had a 67% higher risk. By the time patients were to receive transplants, 34% experienced an increased symptom burden while 42% remained unchanged.
“Discussion of expected reductions in symptoms should be a part of the shared decision-making for future care post-transplantation,” the authors conclude. “Our findings on the post-transplantation change in symptoms can help inform this important discussion, clarify the timeline for improvement, identify populations who are most likely to benefit, and promote patient-centered care.”