Cardiovascular disease and renal impairment are common in cirrhotic transplant candidates. We aimed to investigate potential association between pretransplant renal function impairment and cardiac events after liver transplantation.Methods
Adult cirrhotic patients undergoing first-time liver transplantation between 1999 and 2007 in a single institution with available glomerular filtration rate (GFR), assessed by 51Cr-EDTA clearance at pre-transplant evaluation, were retrospectively enrolled (n=202). Impaired renal function was defined as GFR less than 60 mL/min/1.73 sqm. Pretransplant QT-time corrected by heart rate (QTc) and left-ventricular dysfunction was also registered. Mortality and cardiac events were analyzed, until death or last follow-up (end 2009).Results
Renal impairment was present in 24% (48/202). Cardiac events occurred in 28% (56/202) after transplantation, mean follow-up time of 3.8 years (2.2). Events were more common in patients with renal impairment compared with those without (48% versus 21%, P<0.001). In Cox regression analysis, pretransplant renal impairment was found to be an independent predictor of posttransplant cardiac events (HR 2.19, 95% CI 1.25–3.85) and reduced cardiac event-free survival (HR 2.27, 95% CI 1.31–3.94). Prolonged QTc interval was an independent predictor of posttransplant cardiac events in the subgroup with pretransplant electrocardiogram and echocardiogram (n=166 and n=112, HR 4.75, 95% CI 2.07–10.9); however, left-ventricular diastolic dysfunction was not (P>0.05). A pretransplant score comprising renal impairment, prolonged QTc interval, and age older than 52 was developed for prediction of 3- and 12-month cardiac events (c-statistic 0.73 and 0.75, respectively).Conclusions
Pretransplant renal impairment is a predictor of cardiac event after liver transplantation together with prolonged QTc interval.