Background: Antibody mediated rejection (AMR) is an important cause of graft loss in the post heart transplant period. The following study was conducted to determine differences between survivors and nonsurvivors who developed post heart transplant AMR. Methods: We retrospectively reviewed the charts of patients who received a heart transplant between January 1993 and December 2002. Patients with biopsy proven AMR were identified. This group was divided into survivors and nonsurvivors. Groups were compared with regards to demographics, T-cell flow panel of reactive antibodies (PRA), flow cross-matches (anti-donor HLA Class I and II), and short- and long-term outcomes. Results of endomyocardial biopsies were collected to allow calculation of sensitivity, specificity, negative- and positive predictive values as well as accuracy of immunoglobulins and complement split products in association to death. Results: A total of 65 patients (8.9%) were diagnosed with AMR. Mean age was 48 y (range: 8-68 y) and 53.8% were males. Episodes of hemodynamic instability associated with AMR were observed in 37% of patients. Only two deaths were directly attributed to acute AMR. Nearly 20% of AMR patients developed transplant coronary artery disease. Univariate analysis identified T-PRA (P < 0.001), mean T-cell molecules of equivalent soluble fluorochrome (MESF) (P < 0.001) and mean B-cell MESF (P < 0.001) as possible factors associated with death. Neither demographics of complement split products were associated to late death. Conclusion: When studying patients with AMR, pretransplant T-PRA, T-cell, and B-cell MESF may identify individuals at risk of late death.
- heart transplantation
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