COVID-19 in Kidney Transplant Recipients With Diabetes Mellitus: A Propensity Score Matching Analysis


Kidney transplant recipients present higher rates of pre-existing comorbidities, in particular diabetes mellitus (DM), hypertension, and cardiac disease. We aimed to verify the main risk factors related to DM that contribute to COVID-19 progression and mortality in a kidney transplant setting. From March to August 2020, we evaluated 300 kidney transplant recipients affected by COVID-19. We used propensity score matching (PSM) to estimate the impact of DM on COVID-19. After matching, all baseline characteristics were well balanced between those with and without DM (n = 100 in each group). Case fatality rate, the requirement of invasive mechanical ventilation (IMV), and acute kidney injury (AKI) were associated with previous fasting blood glucose, and C-reactive protein (CRP), and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) levels on admission. These findings were similar in kidney transplant patients with and without DM. Glycemia on admission and estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) either on admission or basal correlated to the need of IMV and development of AKI, respectively. Poor glycaemic control, eGFR, markers of inflammation (CRP) and tissue damage (LDH) were indicative of COVID-19 burden in kidney transplant recipients and may be useful tools for risk-stratifying this population, independently of the DM status, during the pandemic.



COVID-19, diabetes mellitus, kidney transplant, outcomes, propensity score

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Transplant International, v. 35.