The Development of Pulmonary Hypertension Results in Decreased Post-Transplant Survival

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Abstract

The effects of pulmonary hypertension (PAH) on survival after heart transplantation are debated, especially for patients with left ventricular assist devices (LVAD). The United Network of Organ Sharing database was retrospectively queried from January 2005 to June 2015 to identify adult patients who underwent heart transplantation. Four groups were defined: patients without PAH, persistent PAH, resolved PAH, and developed PAH between listing and transplant. A total of 15,914 patients underwent heart transplant of which 4,662 (29%) were implanted with an LVAD. Of the total population, 10,872 (68%) had PAH at time of listing and 9,661 (61%) had PAH at time of transplant. Long-term survival was significantly worse for patients with an LVAD than for those without who had PAH at time of transplant (p = 0.010). Kaplan–Meier analysis showed a trend of worse long-term survival for patients with an LVAD who developed PAH by the time of transplant but improved survival for patients with resolved PAH while on LVAD therapy (p = 0.052). PAH at time of transplant results in worse long-term survival for patients with an LVAD. Furthermore, the development of PAH while on LVAD therapy may negatively impact long-term post-transplant survival, while resolution of PAH improves long-term survival.

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