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Association of Pretransplant Coronary Heart Disease Testing With Early Kidney Transplant Outcomes

JAMA Intern Med. 2023 Jan 3. doi: 10.1001/jamainternmed.2022.6069. Online ahead of print.


IMPORTANCE: Testing for coronary heart disease (CHD) in asymptomatic kidney transplant candidates before transplant is widespread and endorsed by various professional societies, but its association with perioperative outcomes is unclear.

OBJECTIVE: To estimate the association of pretransplant CHD testing with rates of death and myocardial infarction (MI).

DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS: This retrospective cohort study included all adult, first-time kidney transplant recipients from January 2000 through December 2014 in the US Renal Data System with at least 1 year of Medicare enrollment before and after transplant. An instrumental variable (IV) analysis was used, with the program-level CHD testing rate in the year of the transplant as the IV. Analyses were stratified by study period, as the rate of CHD testing varied over time. A combination of US Renal Data System variables and Medicare claims was used to ascertain exposure, IV, covariates, and outcomes.

EXPOSURES: Receipt of nonurgent invasive or noninvasive CHD testing during the 12 months preceding kidney transplant.

MAIN OUTCOMES AND MEASURES: The primary outcome was a composite of death or acute MI within 30 days of after kidney transplant.

RESULTS: The cohort comprised 79 334 adult, first-time kidney transplant recipients (30 147 women [38%]; 25 387 [21%] Black and 48 394 [61%] White individuals; mean [SD] age of 56 [14] years during 2012 to 2014). The primary outcome occurred in 4604 patients (244 [5.3%]; 120 [2.6%] death, 134 [2.9%] acute MI). During the most recent study period (2012-2014), the CHD testing rate was 56% in patients in the most test-intensive transplant programs (fifth IV quintile) and 24% in patients at the least test-intensive transplant program (first IV quintile, P < .001); this pattern was similar across other study periods. In the main IV analysis, compared with no testing, CHD testing was not associated with a change in the rate of primary outcome (rate difference, 1.9%; 95% CI, 0%-3.5%). The results were similar across study periods, except for 2000 to 2003, during which CHD testing was associated with a higher event rate (rate difference, 6.8%; 95% CI, 1.8%-12.0%).

CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE: The results of this cohort study suggest that pretransplant CHD testing was not associated with a reduction in early posttransplant death or acute MI. The study findings potentially challenge the ubiquity of CHD testing before kidney transplant and should be confirmed in interventional studies.

PMID:36595271 | DOI:10.1001/jamainternmed.2022.6069

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