Successful Renal Transplantation in High-Risk Small Children with a Completely Thrombosed Inferior Vena Cava

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Background.Inferior vena cava (IVC) thrombosis is generally a contraindication to renal transplantation in small children because of the technical difficulty and limitations in allograft venous outflow drainage that risk graft thrombosis.Methods.The records of six consecutive children (9.9–27.4 kg) with end-stage renal disease and thrombosed IVCs were reviewed. Small deceased donor renal allografts were utilized in all cases where immediate posttransplant venous renal outflow would theoretically not exceed the drainage capacity of the iliac or adjacent pelvic collateral veins.Results.There is 100% patient survival with two patients returning to dialysis at seven and three years posttransplantation. There were no surgical complications or delayed graft function. Postoperatively, progressive renal vein and simultaneous iliac venous enlargement was observed in five of six recipients concomitant with renal allograft enlargement. In these patients, maximum renal volume achieved was between 152 and 275 ml and last recorded Schwartz glomerular filtration rates ranged from 67 to 118 ml/min. The sixth allograft had an early, severe rejection episode that limited renal growth and attainment of good renal function. All patients demonstrated resumption of growth rates commensurate with age but without significant catch-up growth.Conclusion.A small deceased donor kidney can provide freedom from dialysis and better quality of life for small children with IVC thrombosis during an age when dialysis treatment is difficult and the complications of the thrombosed IVC may compromise life. Good renal function was attained in patients without rejection episodes. In those with rejection, our approach allowed for patient growth during allograft function, providing a bridge for a repeat transplant.

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