New-onset graft dysfunction after heart transplantationincidence and mechanism-related outcomes

Khurram Shahzad, Quratul Ain Aziz, Jean Paul Leva, Martin Cadeiras, Eric K. Ho, George Vlad, E. Rodica Vasilescu, Farhana Latif, Anshu Sinha, Elizabeth Burke, Linda J. Addonizio, Susan W. Restaino, Charles C. Marboe, Nicole Suciu-Foca, Yoshifumi Naka, Donna Mancini, Mario C. Deng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


Background Graft dysfunction (GD) after heart transplantation (HTx) is a major cause of morbidity and mortality. The impact of different pathophysiologic mechanisms on outcome is unknown. In this large, single-center study we aimed to assess the incidence of GD and compare the outcomes with different histopathologic mechanisms of rejection. Methods We analyzed a data set of 1,099 consecutive patients after their HTx at Columbia University Medical Center between January 1994 and March 2008, and identified all patients hospitalized with new-onset GD. Based on the histopathologic data, patients were divided into GD-unexplained (Group-GD-U), GD-antibody-mediated rejection (Group-GD-AMR), GD-cardiac allograft vasculopathy (Group-GD-CAV) and GD-acute cellular rejection (Group-GD-ACR) groups. We compared the in-hospital and 3-, 6- and 12-month mortality across these groups using the chi-square test. We also compared the 3-, 6- and 12-month survival curves across groups using the log-rank test. Results Of 126 patients (12%) identified with GD, complete histology data were available for 100 patients. There were 21, 20, 27 and 32 patients identified in Group-GD-U, Group-GD-AMR, Group-GD-CAV and Group-GD-ACR, respectively. The in-hospital mortality rates were 52%, 20%, 15% and 6%, respectively. The in-hospital mortality rate was significantly higher in Group-GD-U compared with all other groups (p = 0.0006). The 3-, 6- and 12-month survival rate was also significantly lower in Group-GD-U compared with all other groups. Conclusion A significant proportion of patients presenting with new-onset GD have unexplained histopathology. Unexplained GD is associated with a significantly higher mortality rate. New diagnostic tools are necessary to better understand and detect/predict this malignant phenotype. Crown

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)194-203
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Heart and Lung Transplantation
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • acute cellular rejection
  • antibody-mediated rejection
  • cardiac allograft vasculopathy
  • graft dysfunction
  • heart transplant
  • unexplained graft dysfunction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Transplantation


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