Journal Article

Transplantation of kidneys from paediatric DCD donors: a comparison with DBD donors

Eva E. de Vries, Pieter E.R. Hoogland, Jentina Wind, Maarten G.J. Snoeijs and Ernest L.W. van Heurn

in Nephrology Dialysis Transplantation

Published on behalf of European Renal Association - European Dialysis and Transplant Assoc

Volume 28, issue 1, pages 220-226
Published in print January 2013 | ISSN: 0931-0509
Published online November 2012 | e-ISSN: 1460-2385 | DOI:
Transplantation of kidneys from paediatric DCD donors: a comparison with DBD donors

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Although acceptable outcomes have been reported in kidney transplantation from donation after cardiac death (DCD), little is known about kidney transplantation from paediatric DCD. The objective of this study was to compare the outcome of kidney transplantation using paediatric DCD with the outcome of paediatric donation after brain death (DBD).


Recipients from DCD and DBD donors <18 years of age transplanted in the Netherlands between January 1981 and July 2006 were included in this study. Ninety-one patients were transplanted with kidneys from paediatric DCD donors and 405 patients received grafts from paediatric DBD donors.


Grafts from DCD donors were associated with higher percentage of primary non-function (9 versus 2%, P < 0.01) and delayed graft function (48 versus 8%, P < 0.001) compared with DBD donor grafts. Estimated glomerular filtration rate did not differ between groups (57 ± 17 versus 58 ± 21 mL/min at 1 year and 62 ± 14 versus 57 ± 22 mL/min at 5 years, respectively). After correction for confounding variables, the risk of graft failure was higher in the DCD group [hazard ratio 2.440 (95% confidence interval (CI) 1.280–4.650; P = 0.007]. Patient survival, however, was similar between groups [hazard ratio 1.559 (95% CI 0.848–2.867; P = 0.153)].


Paediatric DCD kidneys represent a valuable source of donor kidneys that has not been fully utilized. Although transplantation of paediatric DCD kidneys is associated with a higher risk of graft failure than transplantation of paediatric DBD kidneys, results are comparable with adult donors. We therefore conclude that paediatric DCD kidneys can be safely added to the donor pool.

Keywords: donation after cardiac death; kidney; paediatrics; transplantation

Journal Article.  3881 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Nephrology

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