Study finds kidney transplant donation rates vary widely across Europe

March 12, 2016

A new Europe-wide survey shows significant country-to-country differences in rates of kidney transplant donors. The survey shows for example within the EU, there is a x5 variation in the number of kidney donors per country (per head of population). This variation is probably due to different legal and social standards across Europe.

Kidneys can fail for a variety of reasons, the most common being diabetes, high blood pressure, drug overdose, and physical injury. Kidney dialysis is often used as a treatment, but the best long-term solution is transplant, usually from a recently-deceased donor. Rates of Chronic Kidney Disease vary considerably across Europe, from 3% to 17% of the population, and are increasing. * Demand for kidneys almost always exceeds possible supply, and each country manages transplants differently. Now a new survey, being presented at the European Association of Urology congress in Munich, has shown significant differences in the number of donor kidneys available in each country.

Dr. Víctor Díez Nicolás (associated member, European Society for Transplantation in Urology, ESTU) will present the results of this ESTU-led survey on kidney donation rates and kidney transplantation rates across Europe for 2014. Comparing data from a range of registers, they found wide country to country variation. For example:

All figures are 2014 figures. All figures are deceased donors per million population.

Note: Full country figures are in the abstract, available from press officer on request.

Dr Díez Nicolás said:

"The circumstances in country are very different, but basically it depends on two factors, social sensitivity, and legislation. Most organs for transplantation are come from brain dead donors. But each country manages organ availability differently. In Spain for example, each citizen is a potential donor unless they opt-out of the transplant scheme, whereas in Germany there is an 'opt-in' scheme. Some countries also allow donation from living donors, or from persons whose hearts have stopped. The number of organs from both these sources has been increasing".

As the technology becomes more mainstream, and rates of kidney failure are increasing, the demand for organs has increased quite significantly, and there is a general need to obtain more organs. At the moment, whether you can find a donor organ largely depends on where you live. If countries want to increase transplant rates, and so increase survival from kidney failure, they might consider changing the way they source donor organs".

Professor Arnaldo José Figueiredo (Coimbra, Portugal), chairman of the ESTU Said:

"Transplantation remains the most effective way of replacing kidney function. End stage renal failure incidence is increasing steadily in all European countries and, notwithstanding the fact that efforts should primarily be put on prevention, transplantation activity also needs be promoted, as demand clearly exceeds supply. There are significant discrepancies in transplant activity among European countries, and the ones with lower rates of transplant per capita should look at the examples of the leaders. At the same time, there are important differences where the transplanted organs come from, such as brain dead, non-heart beating and living donors, meaning there is scope for improvement in each program".
There was no external funding for this research.

European Association of Urology

Related Kidney Failure Articles from Brightsurf:

UC research finds low rates of contraceptive use in women with kidney failure
New research from the University of Cincinnati finds that women with kidney failure have low rates of contraceptive use.

Why do minorities have higher rates of kidney failure?
A new study indicates that Blacks and Hispanics have experienced higher rates of kidney failure compared with whites due to more rapid kidney function decline.

The economic burden of kidney transplant failure in the United States
A recent analysis published in the American Journal of Transplantation estimates that for the average US patient who has undergone kidney transplantation, failure of the transplanted organ (graft failure) will impose additional medical costs of $78,079 and a loss of 1.66 quality-adjusted life years.

Heart disease linked to a higher risk of kidney failure
In adults followed for a median of 17.5 years, cardiovascular diseases--including heart failure, atrial fibrillation, coronary heart disease, and stroke--were each linked with a higher risk of developing kidney failure.

Compound offers prospects for preventing acute kidney failure
Russian researchers from the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology, the Institute of Cell Biophysics, and elsewhere have shown an antioxidant compound known as peroxiredoxin to be effective in treating kidney injury in mice.

New study confirms protective effect of diabetes drugs against kidney failure
A new meta-analysis published in Lancet Diabetes and Endocrinology has found that SGLT2 inhibitors can reduce the risk of dialysis, transplantation, or death due to kidney disease in people with type 2 diabetes.

Is kidney failure a man's disease?
A new analysis of the ERA-EDTA Registry [1] reveals a striking gender difference in the incidence and prevalence of end-stage renal disease.

Kidney failure on the rise in Australians under 50 with type 2 diabetes
A study of more than 1.3 million Australians with diabetes has found that kidney failure is increasing in people with type 2 diabetes aged under 50 years, leading to reduced quality of life and placing growing demand on the country's kidney dialysis and transplantation services.

Frailty may lower kidney failure patients' likelihood of receiving a transplant
Frailty is associated with decreased access at multiple stages in the pathway to kidney transplantation.

Obesity surgery prevents severe chronic kidney disease and kidney failure
Patients that underwent weight-loss surgery ran a significantly lower risk of developing severe chronic kidney disease and kidney failure, when compared to conventionally treated patients, according to a study published in International Journal of Obesity.

Read More: Kidney Failure News and Kidney Failure Current Events is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to