Induction therapy with basiliximab allows delayed initiation of cyclosporine and preserves renal function after cardiac transplantation.
BACKGROUND: Cyclosporine (CsA) is frequently initiated as induction therapy in patients undergoing orthotopic heart transplantation, but our experience has identified a significant rate of post-operative renal dysfunction. We therefore devised a renal-sparing cyclosporine-free induction regimen consisting of the early administration basiliximab, an interleukin-2 receptor monoclonal antibody, followed by the late initiation of cyclosporine on post-operative Day 4. METHODS: Between September 1998 and December 1999, we treated 25 patients at risk for post-operative renal dysfunction (high-risk basiliximab group) with the new induction regimen and another 33 patients not at risk (low-risk CsA group) for renal dysfunction with our standard cyclosporine protocol. We identified a historical control group (1996 through 1998) of 32 patients at risk for renal dysfunction (high-risk CsA group) who had received our standard cyclosporine protocol. RESULTS: The increase in serum creatinine levels after transplantation was less in the high-risk basiliximab group (-0.1 +/- 0.7) than in the high-risk CsA group (0.5 +/- 1.0, p < 0.02) and comparable to the low-risk CsA group (0.03 +/- 0.6). The basiliximab protocol did not increase rejection; the percentage of rejection episodes was high-risk basiliximab, 0; high-risk CsA, 13; and low-risk CsA, 3 (p = .13). CONCLUSION: Basiliximab induction therapy allows delayed initiation of cyclosporine after cardiac transplantation without an increase in rejection and reduces the risk of post-operative renal dysfunction.
Rosenberg, PB; Vriesendorp, AE; Drazner, MH; Dries, DL; Kaiser, PA; Hynan, LS; Dimaio, JM; Meyer, D; Ring, WS; Yancy, CW
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