Publications by authors named "Dominick Megna"

18 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Long-term outcomes after heart transplantation using ex vivo allograft perfusion in standard risk donors: A single-center experience.

Clin Transplant 2022 Jan 14:e14591. Epub 2022 Jan 14.

Department of Cardiac Surgery, Smidt Heart Institute, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles, California, USA.

Introduction: The Organ Care System (OCS) is an ex vivo perfusion platform for donor heart preservation. Short/mid-term post-transplant outcomes after its use are comparable to standard cold storage (CS). We evaluated long-term outcomes following its use.

Methods: Between 2011 and 2013, 38 patients from a single center were randomized as a part of the PROCEED II trial to receive allografts preserved with CS (n = 19) or OCS (n = 19). Endpoints included 8-year survival, survival free from graft-related deaths, freedom from cardiac allograft vasculopathy (CAV), non-fatal major adverse cardiac events (NF-MACE), and rejections.

Results: Eight-year survival was 57.9% in the OCS group and 73.7% in the CS group (p = .24). Freedom from CAV was 89.5% in the OCS group and 67.8% in the CS group (p = .13). Freedom from NF-MACE was 89.5% in the OCS group and 67.5% in the CS group (p = .14). Eight-year survival free from graft-related death was equivalent between the two groups (84.2% vs. 84.2%, p = .93). No differences in rejection episodes were observed (all p > .5).

Conclusions: In select patients receiving OCS preserved allografts, late post-transplant survival trended lower than those transplanted with an allograft preserved with CS. This is based on a small single-center series, and larger numbers are needed to confirm these findings.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/ctr.14591DOI Listing
January 2022

Sudden Cardiac Arrest Due to Ascending Aortic Thrombus Originating From Penetrating Aortic Ulcer.

JACC Case Rep 2021 Oct 20;3(14):1617-1621. Epub 2021 Oct 20.

Department of Cardiology, Smidt Heart Institute, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles, California, USA.

Penetrating aortic ulcers typically occur in severely diseased vessels. We present the case of a 46-year-old woman, without extensive atherosclerosis, who had sudden cardiac arrest related to ischemia from a mobile intraluminal aortic thrombus adherent to a penetrating ulcer in the ascending aorta. ().
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jaccas.2021.08.002DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8543156PMC
October 2021

Diagnosing heparin-induced thrombocytopenia in mechanical circulatory support device patients.

J Heart Lung Transplant 2022 Jan 17;41(1):80-85. Epub 2021 Sep 17.

Pathology, Cedars Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles, California. Electronic address:

Background: Mechanical circulatory support device (MCSD) patients with positive heparin-induced thrombocytopenia (HIT) screening pose a unique challenge, as clinicians must make rapid decisions about their anticoagulation and whether they can safely undergo cardiopulmonary bypass. We identified screening practices at our institution and other institutions nationwide that differed from American Society of Hematology (ASH) guidelines. This discovery prompted a data review to confirm the applicability of guidelines to this unique population and to highlight complications of "gestalt" screening.

Methods: Our study included MCSD patients with HIT testing from April 2014 to August 2020. We evaluated 510 PF4 IgG ELISA results.

Results: HIT was confirmed in 4.2% of patients. There was an increased prevalence of HIT in patients with nondurable (5.3%) vs durable devices (2.9%) or those in the preimplantation setting (1.3%), however this difference was not statistically significant (p = 0.26). None of the patients with a low probability 4T Score had HIT. All patients with a high probability 4T Score and PF4 immunoassay OD >2.0 had HIT. False positive results occurred in 22% of assays ordered for patients with a low probability 4T Score. Twelve patients with a low probability 4T Score and a false positive immunoassay were switched to a direct thrombin inhibitor (DTI) while awaiting confirmatory results. Two patients experienced clinically significant bleeding after conversion to a DTI. An organ was refused in one patient with false positive HIT screening.

Conclusions: Our findings demonstrate that an opportunity exists to improve clinical outcomes by re-emphasizing the utility of established guidelines and highlighting their safe use in the MCSD patient population.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.healun.2021.09.006DOI Listing
January 2022

Outcomes of Venoarterial Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation for Cardiac Arrest in Adult Patients in the United States.

J Am Heart Assoc 2021 10 11;10(20):e021406. Epub 2021 Oct 11.

Division of Cardiology, Department of Medicine Stony Brook University Medical Center Stony Brook NY.

Background Factors associated with poor prognosis following receipt of extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) in adults with cardiac arrest remain unclear. We aimed to identify predictors of mortality in adults with cardiac arrest receiving ECMO in a nationally representative sample. Methods and Results The US Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project's National Inpatient Sample was used to identify 782 adults hospitalized with cardiac arrest who received ECMO between 2006 and 2014. The primary outcome of interest was all-cause in-hospital mortality. Factors associated with mortality were analyzed using multivariable logistic regression. The overall in-hospital mortality rate was 60.4% (n=472). Patients who died were older and more often men, of non-White race, and with lower household income than those surviving to discharge. In the risk-adjusted analysis, independent predictors of mortality included older age, male sex, lower annual income, absence of ventricular arrhythmia, absence of percutaneous coronary intervention, and presence of therapeutic hypothermia. Conclusions Demographic and therapeutic factors are independently associated with mortality in patients with cardiac arrest receiving ECMO. Identification of which patients with cardiac arrest may receive the utmost benefit from ECMO may aid with decision-making regarding its implementation. Larger-scale studies are warranted to assess the appropriate candidates for ECMO in cardiac arrest.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/JAHA.121.021406DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8751900PMC
October 2021

Rapidly Growing in the Form of Empyema Necessitans: A Case Report.

J Intensive Care Med 2021 Sep 13:8850666211044100. Epub 2021 Sep 13.

22494Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles, CA, USA.

We present a case of rapidly growing disseminated (MTB) that presented as an empyema necessitans (EN) in a 65-year-old woman with a single right lung transplant admitted for progressive dyspnea. While hospitalized, she had daily fevers and was found to have a right-sided chest wall abscess and pleural effusion. Acid-fast bacilli cultures from the abscess and pleural fluid grew MTB within 4 and 6 days, respectively. Blood cultures later grew MTB as well. Upon initiation of rifampin, isoniazid, pyrazinamide, and ethambutol, she developed hemorrhagic pancreatitis and distributive shock secondary to antituberculosis medications and disseminated MTB. Noteworthy features of this case include the rapid rate of MTB culture growth in less than a week, the development of a likely donor-derived MTB EN, and the clinical challenges of MTB screening and MTB infection management in a solid organ transplant recipient.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/08850666211044100DOI Listing
September 2021

Recipient and surgical factors trigger severe primary graft dysfunction after heart transplant.

J Heart Lung Transplant 2021 09 10;40(9):970-980. Epub 2021 Jun 10.

Smidt Heart Institute, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles, California.

Background: Primary graft dysfunction (PGD) is a major cause of early mortality following heart transplant (HT). The International Society for Heart and Lung Transplantation (ISHLT) subdivides PGD into 3 grades of increasing severity. Most studies have assessed risk factors for PGD without distinguishing between PGD severity grade. We sought to identify recipient, donor and surgical risk factors specifically associated with mild/moderate or severe PGD.

Methods: We identified 734 heart transplant recipients at our institution transplanted between January 1, 2012 and December 31, 2018. PGD was defined according to modified ISHLT criteria. Recipient, donor and surgical variables were analyzed by multinomial logistic regression with mild/moderate or severe PGD as the response. Variables significant in single variable modeling were subject to multivariable analysis via penalized logistic regression.

Results: PGD occurred in 24% of the cohort (n = 178) of whom 6% (n = 44) had severe PGD. One-year survival was reduced in recipients with severe PGD but not in those with mild or moderate PGD. Multivariable analysis identified 3 recipient factors: prior cardiac surgery, recipient treatment with ACEI/ARB/ARNI plus MRA, recipient treatment with amiodarone plus beta-blocker, and 3 surgical factors: longer ischemic time, more red blood cell transfusions, and more platelet transfusions, that were associated with severe PGD. We developed a clinical risk score, ABCE, which provided acceptable discrimination and calibration for severe PGD.

Conclusions: Risk factors for mild/moderate PGD were largely distinct from those for severe PGD, suggesting a differing pathophysiology involving several biological pathways. Further research into mechanisms underlying the development of PGD is urgently needed.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.healun.2021.06.002DOI Listing
September 2021

Commentary: The importance of surgical case volume in the transcatheter era.

J Thorac Cardiovasc Surg 2020 Jul 25. Epub 2020 Jul 25.

Department of Cardiac Surgery, Smidt Heart Institute, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles, Calif. Electronic address:

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jtcvs.2020.07.076DOI Listing
July 2020

Commentary: How long can you go with del Nido?

J Thorac Cardiovasc Surg 2020 Oct 27. Epub 2020 Oct 27.

Department of Cardiac Surgery, Smidt Heart Institute, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles, Calif. Electronic address:

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jtcvs.2020.10.076DOI Listing
October 2020

Outcomes of Heart Transplantation in Cardiac Amyloidosis Patients: A Single Center Experience.

Transplant Proc 2021 Jan-Feb;53(1):329-334. Epub 2020 Sep 8.

Cedars-Sinai Smidt Heart Institute, Los Angeles, Calif, United States; Division of Cardiac Surgery, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles, Calif, United States. Electronic address:

Background: Indications for heart transplantation are expanding to include amyloid light chain (AL) and transthyretin-related (TTR) amyloidosis. Previously, AL amyloid had been a contraindication to heart transplantation given inferior outcomes. These patients typically have biventricular failure requiring mechanical circulatory support (MCS). We report the outcomes of patients with end-stage cardiac amyloidosis who underwent cardiac transplantation, including some who were bridged to transplantation with a durable biventricular MCS METHODS: The records for patients with cardiac amyloidosis who underwent cardiac transplant between 2010 and 2018 were reviewed. Primary endpoint was post-transplant 1-year survival. Secondary endpoints included 1-year freedom from cardiac allograft vasculopathy (as defined by stenosis ≥ 30% by angiography), nonfatal major adverse cardiac events (myocardial infarction, new congestive heart failure, percutaneous coronary intervention, implantable cardioverter defibrillator/pacemaker implant, stroke), and any rejection.

Results: A total of 46 patients received heart transplantation with a diagnosis of either AL or TTR amyloidosis. Of these, 7 patients were bridged to transplantation with a durable biventricular MCS device (6 AL, 1 TTR) and 39 patients were transplanted without MCS bridging. The MCS group consisted of 5 total artificial hearts and 2 biventricular assist devices. The 1-year survival was 91% for the entire cohort, 83% for those with AL amyloidosis, 94% for those with TTR amyloidosis, and 86% for those who received MCS bridging.

Conclusions: Cardiac transplantation can be safely performed in selected amyloidosis patients with reasonable short-term outcomes. Those bridged to transplantation with biventricular MCS appear to have short-term outcomes similar to those transplanted without MCS. Larger numbers and longer observation are required to confirm these findings.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.transproceed.2020.08.020DOI Listing
April 2021

Heart transplantation in the era of the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic: Is it safe and feasible?

Clin Transplant 2020 10 24;34(10):e14029. Epub 2020 Jul 24.

Cedars-Sinai Smidt Heart Institute, Los Angeles, California, USA.

As the SARS-CoV-2-pandemic continues to unfold, the number of heart transplants completed in the United States has been declining steadily. The current case series examines the immediate short-term outcomes of seven heart transplant recipients transplanted during the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic. We hope to illustrate that with proper preparation, planning, and testing, heart transplantation can be continued during a pandemic. We assessed 7 patients transplanted from March 4, 2020, to April 15, 2020. The following endpoints were noted: in-hospital survival, in-hospital freedom from rejection, in-hospital nonfatal major cardiac adverse events (NF-MACE), severe primary graft dysfunction, hospital length of stay, and ICU length of stay. There were no expirations throughout the hospital admission. In addition, there were no patients with NF-MACE or treated rejection, and 1 patient developed severe primary graft dysfunction. Average length of stay was 17.2 days with a standard deviation of 5.9 days. ICU length of stay was 7.7 days with a standard deviation of 2.3 days. Despite the decreasing trend in completed heart transplants due to SARS-CoV-2, heart transplantation appears to be feasible in the immediate short term. Further follow-up is needed, however, to assess the impact of SARS-CoV-2 on post-heart transplant outcomes months after transplantation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/ctr.14029DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7361065PMC
October 2020

Impact of Tricuspid Regurgitation on Outcomes of Coronary Artery Bypass.

Ann Thorac Surg 2021 01 26;111(1):50-51. Epub 2020 Jun 26.

Department of Cardiac Surgery, Smidt Heart Institute, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, 127 San Vicente Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90048.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.athoracsur.2020.06.007DOI Listing
January 2021

Total artificial heart: surgical technique in the patient with normal cardiac anatomy.

Ann Cardiothorac Surg 2020 Mar;9(2):81-88

Advanced Heart Program, Banner University Medical Group, Phoenix, Arizona, USA.

Heart failure is a complex, growing problem with significant morbidity and mortality. Though heart transplantation remains the gold standard treatment for end-stage heart failure, there remains a national shortage of donor hearts. Mechanical circulatory support has provided an additional option for clinicians to support patients for the purposes of bridging patients to transplantation or to be used for destination therapy purposes. Despite generally favorable outcomes with univentricular support, in a subset of patients with biventricular heart failure, an isolated left ventricular assist device is not sufficient. Right ventricular failure has a negative impact on patient survival if not identified and treated promptly. The Total Artificial Heart (TAH) is the only Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved artificial heart used for bridging patients to transplantation. Outcomes in patients who undergo implantation of the TAH at experienced centers have been good and reproducible.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.21037/acs.2020.02.09DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7160624PMC
March 2020

A New Paradigm in Mechanical Circulatory Support: 100-Patient Experience.

Ann Thorac Surg 2020 05 26;109(5):1370-1377. Epub 2019 Sep 26.

Department of Cardiac Surgery, Smidt Heart Institute, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles, California.

Background: Acutely decompensated heart failure presents a complicated challenge. Established temporary support measures have significant adverse effects. A minimally invasive temporary left ventricular assist device (LVAD), the Impella 5.0 (Abiomed, Danvers, MA), has been developed to support these patients.

Methods: Patients with acutely decompensated heart failure in whom medical management had failed and who required additional support using an Impella 5.0 device were evaluated from January 2014 to September 2018 at a single center in a retrospective manner using a prospectively maintained database. Patients were treated with the device as a bridge to recovery (BTR; n = 30), bridge to durable device (BTDD; n = 23), or bridge to transplantation (BTT; n = 47). All devices were placed using an axillary artery approach. Demographic features and outcomes were evaluated for each group and compared.

Results: A total of 100 patients underwent insertion of an axillary Impella 5.0 LVAD. Patients had an average age of 56.7 ± 13.2 years, were predominantly male (84%), and had a severely depressed left ventricular ejection fraction (average 16%), and most had an Interagency Registry for Mechanically Assisted Circulatory Support (INTERMACS) profile 1 (57%) or 2 (33%) score. When divided into groups, there was no difference in age or INTERMACS score, but a statistical difference was noted in baseline left ventricular ejection fraction (20%, 14%, 15%) and creatinine level (1.0, 2.0, 1.6), in the BTR, BTDD, or BTT group, respectively (all P < .05). Survival was 64% overall, and it was 50%, 48%, and 81% for BTR, BTDD, and BTT, respectively (P = .007). Survival improved during this experience and was 90% overall in the most recent 30 patients.

Conclusions: Use of this minimally invasive LVAD system is an attractive strategy to support patients with acute decompensated heart failure to recovery, durable LVAD, or heart transplantation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.athoracsur.2019.08.041DOI Listing
May 2020

Single lung transplantation in patients with severe secondary pulmonary hypertension.

J Heart Lung Transplant 2019 09 4;38(9):939-948. Epub 2019 Jul 4.

Division of Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgery, Department of Surgery, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, North Carolina.

Background: The optimal transplant strategy for patients with end-stage lung disease complicated by secondary pulmonary hypertension (PH) is controversial. The aim of this study is to define the role of single lung transplantation in this population.

Methods: We performed a retrospective study of lung transplant recipients using the Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network/United Network for Organ Sharing Standard Transplant Analysis and Research registry. Adult recipients that underwent isolated lung transplantation between May 2005 and June 2015 for end-stage lung disease because of obstructive or restrictive etiologies were identified. Patients were stratified by mean pulmonary artery pressure ([mPAP] ≥ or < 40 mm Hg) and by treatment-single (SOLT) or bilateral (BOLT) orthotopic lung transplantation. The primary outcome measure was overall survival (OS), which was estimated using the Kaplan-Meier method and compared by the log-rank test. To adjust for donor and recipient confounders, Cox proportional hazards models were developed to estimate the adjusted hazard ratio of mortality associated with elevated mPAP in SOLT and BOLT recipients.

Results: A total of 12,392 recipients met inclusion criteria. Of recipients undergoing SOLT, those with mPAP ≥40 were shown to have lower survival, with 5-year OS of 43.9% (95% confidence interval 36.6-52.7; p = 0.007). Of recipients undergoing BOLT, OS was superior to SOLT, and no difference in 5-year OS between mPAP ≥ and <40 was observed (p = 0.15). In the adjusted analysis, mPAP ≥40 mm Hg was found to be an independent predictor for mortality in SOLT, but not BOLT recipients. This finding remained true on multivariable analysis. In patients undergoing SOLT, mPAP ≥40 was associated with an adjusted hazard ratio for mortality of 1.31 (1.08-1.59, p = 0.07). In BOLT, mPAP was not associated with increased hazard (adjusted hazard ratio 1.04, p = 0.48).

Conclusions: There is a reduced survival when a patient with severe secondary PH undergoes SOLT. This increased mortality hazard is not seen in BOLT. It appears that a BOLT may negate the adverse effect that severe PH has on OS, and may be superior to SOLT in patients with mPAP over 40 mm Hg.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.healun.2019.06.014DOI Listing
September 2019

Transplanting a heart with a persistent left superior vena cava.

J Thorac Cardiovasc Surg 2019 02 25;157(2):630-631. Epub 2018 Sep 25.

Division of Cardiothoracic Surgery, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jtcvs.2018.07.109DOI Listing
February 2019

Dual-organ transplantation in older recipients: outcomes after heart-kidney transplant versus isolated heart transplant in patients aged ≥65 years.

Interact Cardiovasc Thorac Surg 2019 01;28(1):45-51

Cedars-Sinai Heart Institute, Los Angeles, CA, USA.

Objectives: Combined heart-kidney transplantation has successful outcomes. With an increasing number of patients with end-stage heart disease, there is a high incidence of significant renal insufficiency that may necessitate combined heart-kidney transplant. Outcomes for heart-kidney transplant recipients aged ≥65 years are not well described.

Methods: Between 2010 and 2015, 163 recipients ≥65 years of age were transplanted in a single centre: 12 heart-kidney and 151 isolated heart transplants. Outcomes assessed were estimated glomerular filtration rate at 1, 6 and 12 months after transplant, the need for dialysis, 1-year survival, 1-year freedom from rejection, 1-year freedom from cardiac allograft vasculopathy and 1-year freedom from non-fatal major adverse cardiac events.

Results: Recipient ages were 67.8 ± 1.6 and 69.0 ± 2.8 years for heart-kidney transplant and isolated heart transplant, and pretransplant estimated glomerular filtration rates were 26.6 ± 9.4 vs 55.2 ± 18.9, respectively. At 1 month (66.3 ± 31.4 vs 67.2 ± 28.0, P = 0.92), 6 months (68.1 ± 21.3 vs 60.5 ± 19.6, P = 0.20) and 12 months (58.6 ± 21.5 vs 52.4 ± 18.5, P = 0.27) post-transplant, estimated glomerular filtration rate was similar for heart-kidney transplant versus isolated heart transplant. There was a trend towards reduced 1-year freedom from temporary dialysis after heart-kidney transplant relative to isolated heart transplant (75.0% vs 90.4%, P = 0.06) without a difference in 1-year freedom from chronic dialysis (100% vs 95.2%, P = 0.46). There were no differences in 1-year survival, 1-year freedom from any treated rejection, acute cellular rejection, antibody-mediated rejection, cardiac allograft vasculopathy and non-fatal major adverse cardiac events.

Conclusions: For patients ≥65 years old, heart-kidney transplant can achieve outcomes on par with heart transplant alone.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/icvts/ivy202DOI Listing
January 2019

Use of durable mechanical circulatory support on outcomes of heart-kidney transplantation.

Interact Cardiovasc Thorac Surg 2018 11;27(5):773-777

Cedars-Sinai Heart Institute, Los Angeles, CA, USA.

Objectives: Previous studies have demonstrated that preheart transplant mechanical circulatory support (MCS) can lead to a small but significant increase in mortality. However, data on outcomes of patients with MCS who require simultaneous heart-kidney transplant are limited.

Methods: A retrospective review of simultaneous heart-kidney transplantations (HKTxs) performed at a single institution over a 5-year period was performed. Patients were divided based on the preoperative use of durable MCS. Renal graft-related end points were evaluated, including glomerular filtration rate following transplantation, prevalence of delayed renal graft function and freedom from antibody and cellular-mediated graft rejection. Patient-specific outcomes, including survival and frequency of non-fatal major adverse cardiac events at 1 year, were additionally assessed.

Results: During the study period, 50 HKTxs were performed, 14 of which had preoperative MCS. HKTx patients with and without MCS implantations had a similar prevalence of delayed graft function (57.1% vs 50.0%; P = 0.757). A numerical trend was observed towards a reduced glomerular filtration rate 1-month post-transplant in patients without an MCS device (81.2 ± 32.8 vs 64.4 ± 27.5; P = 0.072), but no significant difference was observed at 6 and 12 months. No significant difference was observed on the need for post-transplant renal replacement therapy, non-fatal major adverse cardiac events, freedom from graft rejection and overall survival at 1 year.

Conclusions: The use of preoperative MCS in patients undergoing combined HKTx was not found to affect renal graft function post-transplantation and does not seem to be associated with increase in morbidity or mortality.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/icvts/ivy156DOI Listing
November 2018
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