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Henry Ford Hospital Medical Journal

Abstract

A clinical whole organ pancreas transplantation program for patients with insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus complicated by end-stage renal disease was initiated at Henry Ford Hospital in 1987. Five patients have received pancreatic allografts after a previous kidney transplant (phase 1), and six patients had simultaneous pancreas-kidney transplants (phase 2). Ten patients had functioning pancreatic grafts after surgery, and all of them had normal carbohydrate tolerance with appropriate plasma free insulin responses to an oral glucose tolerance test three months after transplantation. As long as 28 months postsurgery six patients remained free of insulin requirements; however, one patient rejected the pancreatic allograft, and three patients died because of cytomegalovirus pneumonia. Two of the latter patients had functioning pancreatic allografts at the time of their demise. These results compare favorably with those of the International Pancreas Transplant Registry which reflects the world experience. Pancreas transplantation is a unique experimental treatment with the potential of restoring euglycemia and improving the prognosis of insulin-dependent diabetic patients.

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