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Alcoholism, clinical and experimental research

Heavy alcohol use in lung donors increases the risk for primary graft dysfunction.


PMID 25421520

Abstract

Heavy alcohol use is known to increase the risk of acute lung injury and the acute respiratory distress syndrome. This is in part due to increased production of reactive oxygen species. We hypothesized that recipients of lungs from heavy drinkers would be more susceptible to lung injury following transplantation. In this retrospective cohort study, donor histories and transplant outcomes were reviewed in 192 consecutive lung transplant recipients. Donors were classified as No Alcohol Use, Moderate Alcohol Use, or Heavy Alcohol Use based on documented donor histories. Freedom from mechanical ventilation took longer in the lung transplant recipients whose donors had Heavy Alcohol Use, compared with those whose donors had No Alcohol Use or Moderate Alcohol Use (pxa0=xa00.01). At admission to the intensive care unit, the Heavy Alcohol Use group had median PaO2 /FiO2 ratio 219 (interquartile range [IQR]: 162 to 382), compared with 305 (IQR: 232 to 400) in the Moderate Alcohol Use group and 314 (IQR: 249 to 418) in the No Alcohol Use group (pxa0=xa00.005). The odds of developing severe primary graft dysfunction (PGD) in the Heavy Alcohol Use group versus the No Alcohol Use group were 8.7 times greater (95% confidence interval 1.427 to 53.404, pxa0=xa00.019) after controlling for factors known to be associated with PGD. Recipients of donors with a heavy alcohol use history had an over 8 times greater risk of developing severe PGD following lung transplant. The increase in PGD resulted in poorer gas exchange in the recipients of donor lungs from heavy alcohol users, and these recipients subsequently required mechanical ventilation for a longer time following transplant. Further investigation into lung donors with heavy alcohol use histories is necessary to determine those at highest risk for PGD following transplant.