Wednesday, November 14, 2018

The Terrible Toll of the Kidney Shortage, by McCormick, Held and Chertow

An editorial in the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology counts the high human costs of the kidney shortage in terms not only of deaths among those on the waiting list for a deceased donor transplant, but also among the other three-fourths of kidney failure patients who are not added to the waiting list but who would medically benefit from a transplant.

The Terrible Toll of the Kidney Shortage,
by Frank McCormick, Philip J. Held, and Glenn M. Chertow

"to see the full extent of the harm done by the kidney shortage and the potential benefit from ending it, let us assume that 50% of those who are diagnosed with ESRD could medically benefit from a transplant. (This assumption is consistent with the findings of Schold et al. 5 that, if all of the patients on dialysis who have a life expectancy of >5 years were placed on the kidney waiting list, the number on the list would almost double.) Thus, half of the 126,000 patients who are currently diagnosed with ESRD each year—63,000 patients—might medically benefit from a transplant. However,if only 20,000 patients per year receive a transplant, the remaining 43,000 would join the growing toll of those who die prematurely because of the kidney shortage. To put this in perspective, this is the same death toll as from 85 fully loaded 747s crashing each year.


See my earlier post on earlier, defining work on the costs of the organ shortage:

Saturday, October 17, 2015

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