Simultaneous transplantation of the pancreas is an option for diabetic patients undergoing kidney trans-plantation to attempt to halt progression of diabetic complications, but the additional risk imposed by the procedure is unclear. Our aim was to determine the morbidity attributable to pancreas transplantation dur-ing simultaneous pancreas and kidney transplantation. We compared the first posttransplant year of 18 consecutive recipients of combined pancreas and kidney trans-plantation to 18 consecutive recipients of kidney transplantation alone. All patients received cadaver donor allografts between 1986 and 1989, and had type I diabetes mellitus with chronic renal failure. There were no differences in patient survival (94% both groups) or satisfactory renal allograft function (89% pancreas/kid- ney group, 83% kidney group) up to 18 months after transplantation. Eighty-eight percent of pancreas allo-grafts were functioning satisfactorily at 18 months. There was a mean (±SD) of 1.5±1.0 acute rejection episodes per patient for the pancreas/kidney group compared to 0.8±6 for the kidney-only group (P< 0.02). Cytomegalovirus infection and wound complications were each encountered more often after pancreas/kidney transplantation than kidney transplantation alone, and together with rejection accounted for a difference in days of hospitalization during the first year (71±34 vs. 27+13, P<0.001). We conclude that simultaneous pancreas transplantation during cadaver donor kidney transplantation accounted for more frequent rejection episodes, CMV infections, and wound complications. These complications resulted in more hospitalization for patients undergoing simultaneous pancreas/kidney transplantation than kidney transplantation alone.
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