Transplant Advances


Advances in Transplant

COVID-19 Infection in Kidney Allograft Recipients

  • Study findings from a retrospective chart review of 54 kidney transplant recipients reveal that a strategy for systematic triage, early management of bacterial infections, and adjustments to immunosuppressive therapy can effectively manage COVID-19 in this patient population.
  • The triage strategy used by Weill Cornell Medicine researchers included systematic telemedicine evaluations and coordinating outpatient care, allowing many kidney transplant recipients with COVID-19 to be treated in the ambulatory setting and avoid unnecessary hospitalization.
  • Transplant recipients with more severe symptoms were triaged to a designated COVID-19 clinic, thereby minimizing the risk to transplant patients receiving routine follow-up care.
  • Successful management techniques for the 54 kidney transplant recipients included careful adjustments in immunosuppressive therapy—reductions in calcineurin inhibitors and antimetabolites with no confirmed cases of acute rejection, aggressive evaluation and management of secondary bacterial infections, and careful and monitored use of experimental therapies.
  • The authors note that reducing immunosuppressive medications, rather than completely withholding therapy, may be beneficial for this population of kidney allograft recipients.

Read more:

Lubetzky M, Aull MJ, Craig-Schapiro R, Lee JR, Marku-Podvorica J, Salinas T, Gingras L, Lee LB, Sultan S, Kodiyanplakkal RP, Hartono C, Saal S, Muthukumar T, Kapur S, Suthanthiran M, Dadhania DM. Kidney allograft recipients, immunosuppression, and coronavirus disease-2019: a report of consecutive cases from a New York City transplant center. Nephrol Dial Transplant. 2020;35(7):1250-1261.

Why NewYork-Presbyterian?

We are committed to sharing the lessons we’ve learned from the pandemic with other centers in order to provide optimal care for patients and ensure safety for providers. In light of SARS-COV2, the Kidney Transplant Program at NewYork-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medicine is taking special precautions. Currently, we are performing transplant procedures and providing non-emergency telemedicine visits. To refer a patient, please call (212) 746-3099.

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