Occurrence of cancers in immunosuppressed organ transplant recipients

TitleOccurrence of cancers in immunosuppressed organ transplant recipients
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication1998
AuthorsPenn I
JournalClin Transpl
Pagination147 - 58
Accession Number10503093
Keywords*Transplantation Immunology, Australia / epidemiology, Cause of Death, Female, Graft Survival, Humans, Immunosuppression / *adverse effects, Incidence, Kidney Transplantation / *immunology / mortality, Male, Neoplasms / classification / *epidemiology / mortality, Postoperative Complications / *epidemiology, Registries, Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S., Survival Rate, United States / epidemiology

The findings in this study emphasize the need for lifetime follow-up of organ transplant recipients. Although, a high percentage of posttransplant tumors are low grade malignancies that are readily amenable to treatment, cancer has become a major cause of death in patients otherwise successfully treated by transplantation (14). In an Australian study of the causes of death of patients who survived for at least 10 years with a functioning renal allograft compared with those on dialysis for at least 10 years without transplantation, or with a failed transplant, showed that the proportions of deaths caused by cancer were 26%, 1% and 3%, respectively. Nonetheless the future holds promise. Attempts are being made to modify the present blunderbuss attack on the immune system with more specific methods of control of certain of its components. Much work is currently being done to induce states of immune unresponsiveness directed specifically, and only, at the foreign antigens of the allograft. Hopefully these efforts will eliminate the need for long-term or intense immunosuppressive therapy and the problem of posttransplant malignancies will be relegated to a footnote in the history of organ transplantation.

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