Risk factors for fractures in kidney transplantation

Eileen A. O'Shaughnessy, David C. Dahl, Charles L. Smith, Bertram L. Kasiske

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

97 Scopus citations


Background. Risk factors for fracture after kidney transplantation need to be identified to target patients most likely to benefit from preventive measures. Methods. Medical records were reviewed for 1572 kidney transplants done at a single center between February, 1963 and May, 2000 with 6.5±5.4 years of follow-up. Results. One or more fractures occurred in 300 (19.1%), with multiple fractures in 101 (6.4%). After excluding fractures of the foot or ankle (n=130 transplants, 8.3%), avascular necrosis (n =86, 5.5%), and vertebral fractures (n=28, 1.8%), there were one or more fractures in 196 (12.5%), with a cumulative incidence of 12.0%, 18.5%, and 23.0% at 5, 10, and 15 years, respectively. In multivariate Cox proportional hazards analysis, age had no effect on fractures in men. Compared with men and younger women, women 46-60 and >60 years old were, respectively, 2.11 (95% confidence interval 1.43-3.12, P=0.0002) and 3.47 (2.16-5.60, P<0.0001) times more likely to have fractures. Kidney failure from type 1 and 2 diabetes increased the risk by 2.08 (1.47-2.95, P<0.0001) and 1.92 (1.15-3.20, P=0.0131), respectively. A history of fracture pretransplant increased the risk by 2.15 (1.49-3.09, P<0.0001). Each year of pretransplant kidney failure increased the risk by 1.09 (1.05-1.14, P<0.0001). Obesity (body mass index >30 kg/m2) was associated with 55% (17-76%, P=0.0110) less risk. Different immunosuppressive medications, acute rejections, and multiple other factors were not independently associated with fractures. Conclusions. The population of transplant patients at high risk for fracture can be identified using age/gender, pretransplant fracture history, diabetes, obesity, and years of pretransplant kidney failure.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)362-366
Number of pages5
Issue number3
StatePublished - Aug 2002


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