Approximately 50% of organ donors develop hyperglycaemia in intensive care, which is managed with insulin therapy. Researchers aimed to determine the relationships between donor insulin use (DIU) and graft failure in pancreas transplantation.
UK Transplant Registry organ donor data were linked with national data from the UK solid pancreas transplant programme. All pancreas transplants performed between 2004 and 2016 with complete follow-up data were included. Logistic regression models determined associations between DIU and causes of graft failure within 3 months. Area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (aROC) and net reclassification improvement (NRI) assessed the added value of DIU as a predictor of graft failure.
-- In 2168 pancreas transplant recipients, 1112 (51%) donors were insulin-treated. DIU was associated with a higher risk of graft loss from isolated islet failure, and this relationship was duration/dose dependent.
-- DIU was also associated with a higher risk of graft loss from anastomotic leak and a lower risk of graft loss from thrombosis , although duration/dose-dependent relationships were only identified in pancreas transplant alone/pancreas after kidney transplant recipients with grafts failing due to thrombosis.
-- The relationships between donor insulin characteristics and isolated islet failure remained significant after adjusting for potential confounders: DIU 1.75; duration 1.08.
-- In multivariable analyses, donor insulin characteristics remained significant predictors of lower risk of graft thrombosis in pancreas transplant alone/pancreas after kidney transplant recipients: DIU, 0.34; insulin duration/dose, 0.02.
-- When data on insulin were added to models predicting isolated islet failure, a significant improvement in discrimination and risk reclassification was observed in all models: no DIU aROC 0.56; DIU aROC 0.57; NRI 0.28; insulin duration aROC 0.60; NRI 0.35.
Conclusively, DIU predicts graft survival in pancreas transplant recipients. This assessment could help improve donor selection and thereby improve patient and graft outcomes.